Are You Prepared for Your Divorce?
Choosing to file for divorce is a momentous decision. Before you begin the process, it is a good idea to ensure that you are prepared in every way possible. The last thing you want is to be knee-deep in divorce proceedings and realize you are unprepared to address a critical question.
The first thing any professional will recommend is to begin saving money. It is not only attorneys that cost money, but there will also be many different sets of bills. Without your spouse’s income, it may be harder to pay them. It is imperative, however, that you not do this after you have filed papers, at least not with money such as your paycheck that can be considered marital property. Illinois is an equitable distribution state, meaning that marital property is distributed to the spouses in the most equitable manner possible upon a divorce. Concealing money that is earmarked as marital property, as spouses’ paychecks usually are, can lead to accusations of hiding assets.
It is also a good idea to consult a financial professional sooner rather than later, bringing any financial documents you are able to obtain. You should do everything you can to develop a realistic picture of your finances at the onset of a divorce. A professional will be able to give specialized, individualized advice as to whether you should take the step of closing joint accounts or opening a private account, or what to do with certain assets like stocks and retirement accounts. These instruments are individual, and each situation is unique. In many cases, only a professional can assess your potential financial issues with any degree of accuracy.
The other part of preparing to file for divorce is to make certain you are ready emotionally and mentally. It can be extremely difficult to follow through on your plans, especially if there is a possibility that the proceedings may turn nasty.
Information is key, regardless of the tenor of proceedings. Collecting any kind of information possible regarding your children’s situations—their schooling information, medical records, and the like—can help put you in a solid position in a dispute of parental responsibilities. Illinois courts tend to allocate parenting time according to the best interests of the child, and if you are able to show a greater familiarity with your children’s lives and interests, it may help sway a judge in your favor. Even if you have no children, it is still in your best interests to be well-informed about the assets you and your soon-to-be-ex spouse have between you. It can be surprisingly traumatic to lose specific assets, especially if they have figured in your life prominently, like a painting, appliance or even a pet.
Seek Experienced Assistance
A divorce is very intimidating for most people. It is always a good idea to engage a competent attorney to help guide you through the process and set your mind at ease. Contact a skilled Kane County divorce attorney to discuss your case and to get the guidance you need. Call 630-232-9700 for a confidential consultation at The Law Offices of Douglas B. Warlick & Associates today.