How To Prepare for Divorce

Minimize Professional Fees

When a family does not prepare properly prior to securing an Attorney to file for divorce, the average divorce case can cost up to $50,000 or more. Costly divorce cases are due to two main reasons:

  1. Financial information required for settlement negotiations are withheld by one party which stalls the process and requires costly subpoenas for banking and investment records while professional fees accumulate simply waiting the 60-90 days it takes to receive these records from the financial institutions.
  2. Parents wage a custody battle over visitation/custody time with minor children.

Fact: Judges in civil divorce cases will usually equally divide all financial assets accumulated during the marriage between the divorcing parties and will fine a party for withholding financial information or moving financial assets.

Fact: Judges in civil divorce cases will usually order that minor children get equal time with both parents to ensure they continue to develop their relationship with each parent.

A family has two choices:

  • Quickly negotiate a financial settlement and parenting plan that achieves the above two criterion, saving $10,000 or more in unnecessary fees.
  • Stage a long legal battle, then let a Judge order a financial settlement and parenting plan that achieves the above two criterion, costing $50,000-$100,000 or more of unnecessary fees.

The Transitions Divorce Prep Workbook guides a family on how to prepare for divorce by working through the first choice to substantially minimize professional fees.

Shorten the Legal Process

Long drawn out divorce cases can be very costly on a family, both financially and emotionally. A family who can move swiftly through the process, achieving a fair settlement and parenting plan can minimize the conflict between divorcing parties and set the stage for a healthy Co-Parenting environment post divorce.

The emotional wounds caused by a lengthy, high-conflict divorce case are very difficult to overcome and will greatly hinder post-divorce relations with all family members including minor children.

The Transitions Divorce Prep Workbook guides a family on how to prepare for divorce prior to engaging in the legal process to empower the divorcing parties to manage their case and minimize length of time in the legal arena, thereby minimizing unnecessary professional fees. The ideal scenario a family should try to achieve is negotiating a financial settlement and parenting plan together or through a State Registered Mediator (sometimes called “Registered Neutral”) then secure an Attorney to file the “Petition for Divorce” AND the Settlement Documents simultaneously. This scenario ensures a swift process and substantially reduces the cost to the family.

If this scenario is not possible, then securing “Negotiation Style” Attorneys for both parties (who have a proven track record of mediating settlements and avoiding litigation) and avoiding “Litigation Style” Attorneys (who prefer to settle their cases in a trial) will substantially reduce the conflict and shorten the time in the legal process.

Prepare for Financial Independence

As a family transitions from one household into two separate households through divorce there are many considerations one must address:

  • Establishing independent credit history prior to separating family accounts
  • What new expenses will be incurred?
  • What will medical insurance costs be with two households?
  • How can both households minimize expenses and tax implications?
  • What options are there to consider regarding the family home?

The Transitions Divorce Prep Workbook includes practical guidance for  preparing for divorce, along with the steps the family can take prior to a separation of households that will enhance a smooth transition.