You have likely heard horror stories about how chaotic and adversarial divorce can be. After all, it is the process of ending a relationship that you intended to last forever. Divorce has the potential for bringing out the worst in people, but there is no rule that says that divorce has to be ugly, or complicated or confrontational. Even if you approach it with the intention of making it as amicable as possible, do not be surprised if things begin to head south a bit. Despite all of the drama, you can decide that you are going to be organized, remain civil, and keep the divorce process as simple as possible. If that is your goal, here are four tips for Maryland residents for simplifying your divorce:
- Set aside the necessary time and attention to deal with the divorce.
Managing the details of the divorce is going to require your attention, but if you are efficient, it does not have to take over your life. You will need to gather financial documents and records, gather the information about your debts, your monthly expenses, pay stubs, tax returns, your health insurance and retirement benefits. Assembling all of this information will be helpful in giving you a clear picture of your marital estate and your separate property if you have any. Kudos if you already have this information gathered together in one place. Having these vital documents in order will be essential and save you time and effort when you meet with your Maryland divorce attorney.
- Have a conversation with your spouse about the divorce.
If your relationship is in a place where it is possible, sit down with your spouse and work out a preliminary plan. Work out a division of the marital property that seems fair to both parties, discuss what each of you would like the custody arrangement to be if you have children, and whether one of you will remain in the family home or if you will sell it. If you and your spouse cannot see eye to eye, at least you will have tried, and your attorney may be able to help you determine what you really need.
- Start to prepare yourself for your new life.
It takes time to separate the life you have built together with your soon to be ex-spouse. You might be surprised at how the little things add up. Open up a new bank account in your name. Get a credit card in your name and get copies of your credit reports. Track all of your spending and receipts for household expenses and expenditures for the children. Be up front and honest that you are doing these things, and make sure the receipts are going in a folder with your other documentation, so it does not look as though you are hiding anything. Make sure to budget for the costs of switching over the utilities (if necessary), and be aware that your credit make take longer to rebuild than you thought.
- Find a Maryland divorce attorney right away.
Your most important move when trying to simplify your divorce is to find the right Maryland divorce attorney and start working with them right away. At Cynthia H. Clark & Associates, LLC, we take our cues from you and we tailor our strategies to fit your needs. Whether both you and your spouse share a spirit of cooperation with regard to the split, or if you are facing a complex, contested divorce, we can work with you to help make things go as smoothly as possible given the restraints of working with the other side.
Planning for divorce can be nerve-wracking and confusing. Choosing the right divorce attorney to represent you can help smooth things out a bit. Regardless of the level of complexity of your divorce, our skilled divorce lawyers at Cynthia H. Clark & Associates, P.A. will represent your interests and fight for the best outcome possible. We take the time to listen to your concerns and then we present you with legal options that fit your circumstances. If you are thinking about divorce, you are welcome to contact our firm at 410-990-0090 to reserve a consultation time in our Annapolis office.