3 Decisions You’re Going to Have to Make Before Finalizing Your Divorce
There are not many other areas of a person’s life that are more confusing than getting a divorce. Important decisions must be made that will affect a person’s life forever. Understanding the decisions that must be made and choosing the best option available will happen when the individual hires an experienced lawyer.
When an individual is facing a divorce, they should avoid hiring a general attorney. The attorney they hire should have experience in family law. General law attorneys cannot provide guidance. Discuss the attorney’s experience with them before paying a retainer fee.
One of the largest assets most couples own together is the home they live in. This is something each person needs to consider before signing the final decree. An individual need to consider the amount of mortgage, utility bills, upkeep, and maintenance on the home. The age of the roof, furnace, air conditioner, and plumbing components should all be taken into consideration. These expenses can quickly add up. Without a second income to help, replacing these items or performing additional repairs could be out of reach for many people.
If children are involved, the parents will have to decide if the children will remain in the home with one parent or if the house will be sold. This can be a heart-wrenching decision and should be made with everything taken into consideration.
Splitting the debt can be just as overwhelming to perform as splitting the assets. The type of debt will determine which spouse is responsible for the debt. One person should never assume the other will pay off the marital debt. If one partner is paying child support or family health insurance, this will also be considered when dividing the debt of the family.
In certain situations, one party might volunteer to repay all the debt just to end the marriage as quickly as possible. Although this may appear like the easiest thing to do at the time, the individual needs to consider if they’ll be paying alimony or child support in addition to dealing with the debts. Wrong financial decisions during a divorce can ruin an individual’s credit and cause them to go bankrupt.
Uncontested or Contested Divorce
During this emotional rollercoaster, anger and hurt will certainly be present. A party may want to lash out at the other. A contested divorce can cost a couple of thousands of dollars more than an uncontested one.
Choosing mediation over contesting everything in court will also save a couple a lot of money. Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution form. The mediation is conducted with a neutral third party who will work through the various issues divorcing couples will face. No attorney will be present, and the mediator’s findings may be presented to the judge presiding over the case.
There is no set time that a divorce can take from beginning to end. The time required before a divorce is final will depend on the parties and whether they can agree on terms. An uncontested and simple divorce could be as short as three to four months. A contested divorce could take two or more years. The best way to achieve your goals during a divorce is to contact an experienced family law attorney today.