When you realize that you are headed for divorce, you may feel as though your life is in crisis mode, or a great sense of relief, or some combination of these things and many other emotions. However you respond to this shift in your life, it is wise to begin building your divorce strategy as quickly and efficiently as you can.
Even if you and your spouse split on amicable terms, you have a responsibility to protect your rights and priorities in your divorce. After all, if you do not, then who will? Your spouse understandably has his or her interests at heart. Protecting your own interests in divorce is not cynical or calculating, it is your responsibility to yourself.
This is particularly true if your divorce involves complex assets that may take time and effort to divide fairly. As you work through the process of divorce itself, be sure to consider all the legal tools you can use to keep yourself safe and secure and ready for the next chapter of life.
Assessing the relevant property
Divorce means determining a fair way to divide your marital assets and liabilities. Unfortunately, it is rarely easy for spouses to arrive at the same idea of what is fair. This is especially difficult the more complex the assets are within the marriage. It may include assets that one party hopes to keep hidden or does not agree should count as marital property. As you build your divorce plan, you must account for all the assets and liabilities held between you and your spouse, to protect both of you.
Do not make the mistake of prioritizing debts over assets. If you do not identify debts that list you, then you may not realize that these debts harm your credit until the damage is done, keeping you from qualifying for additional loans or barring you from securing a place to live.
Likewise, you must identify all the relevant assets to ensure that your division is truly fair. If you do not, you may find that your spouse withholds some significant assets from the division that you rightly deserve.
Your spouse may also fail to disclose assets like a business because he or she believes that the business is not marital property. In many instances, businesses count as marital property just like a home or a car, and you may deserve a portion of the value of the business, so it is always important to do the due diligence necessary to enter the negotiations confidently informed.
Determine your priorities for stronger negotiations
Realistically, nobody wins everything in divorce. It is really more about understanding the standard ranges of compensation and the various elements in play, such as spousal or child support and debts that may offset assets as you work to find a fair compromise.
In order to get what you deserve, you must set some priorities and understand the things you can willingly let go in order to achieve these goals. Careful preparation and guidance can help you take full advantage of the opportunities of divorce while keeping your rights secure and avoiding pitfalls that turn heartbreak into disaster for so many.