We Will Help You Anticipate And Avoid Challenges In Divorce Proceedings
The breakup of a marriage can be traumatizing, embarrassing, agonizing and can be, ultimately, quite expensive.
Yet Washington, D.C., has a 29.9% divorce rate per 1,000 couples. The District has a higher divorce rate than all 50 states in that category even though divorce rates have dropped 25% in the United States since 1980 (According to research from The Bowling Green State University National Center for Family and Marriage).
Why are there so many divorces in the D.C. area? That is anyone’s guess. Government job stresses, high cost of living, time lost in traffic can all contribute to stresses in any relationship.
Unfortunately, there is no reason to believe that the divorce rate will decrease in the foreseeable future. So, if you are contemplating divorce or going through a divorce now, you are not alone.
Five Important Legal Considerations When Going Through A Divorce
If you are going through this event in your life, here are five top legal considerations to keep in mind:
1) Know the Divorce Laws: Before you embark on getting divorced, familiarize yourself with the divorce laws of the District, Virginia, and Maryland or wherever you all have lived. Certain property laws are different in some states or locations. Also, the legal separation laws are different in some states, too. Additionally, there are differences between annulment, dissolution and divorce. Look up your location’s divorce laws and know them thoroughly.
2) Own Your Part in the Breakup: It is extremely rare-almost never-that a divorce is the cause of only one person. Most divorces come from both spouses not doing what needed to be done to keep the marriage together. Take responsibility for your part. Being honest with yourself, your spouse and your attorney, help the entire process-and may help you when it is all said and done.
3) Place Your Children First: Every family law attorney can tell you of stories where underage children are used as bargaining chips or pawns by one or both spouses to get what they want. As reams of research have shown, this can be quite destructive to your children who may require counseling for the rest of their lives because of parents using them to get back at their ex-spouse. In every step of the divorce process, consider your children. Will it hurt them? If so, don’t do it.
4) Consult an Attorney: Know your legal rights and responsibilities. Meet with an experienced attorney who can give you seasoned and compassionate advice.
5) Copy Documents: This is a common-sense step to take but it is often forgotten in the whirlwind of a divorce. However, it is crucial to make sure tax documents, tax returns, investment statements, mortgage documents, insurance policies, credit card statements and other financial documents are copied and stored in a safe place.
There are other things you can do while going through a divorce which we will cover in future blogs. But, this is a good start. If you are not sure of anything at the moment, call an experienced family law attorney to help you through it all.