It is not easy getting a divorce. It drains you emotionally and financially. Your whole lifestyle changes as a result of such a decision. If you are unprepared, it will hit you a lot harder.
To make this life-changing transition as smooth as possible, you should think about your future clearly and collect information and plan it according to your needs.
This will make the devastating ordeal a bit easier on you and those you love. And that’s where the divorce preparation checklist comes in. If you have reached a stage where you are thinking of how to prepare for divorce, read on to find out about the essentials that should be a part of your divorce settlement checklist.
How to prepare for divorce and when should I get a divorce checklist?
Now, yes, it’s understandable that one doesn’t expect to get divorced when they are getting married; hence no one prepares or plans for it.
Since it is unexpected, people are not emotionally strong enough to make decisions at the time of divorce or have a divorce checklist ready. Planning and having a divorce preparation checklist will help you in restructuring your lives after the big decision.
One of the first steps you should consider is getting pre-divorce financial planning. Doing so will lower the legal costs of the divorce. Furthermore, you and your partner may be able to reach a better and workable divorce settlement.
Questions such as where will the house go? How will the debts be paid? How will the retirement assets be divided? These questions need to be answered while preparing for divorce. In the midst of all the ensuing chaos, some steps should be considered even as the two of you prepare for a divorce. These steps should be a part of your pre-divorce checklist while going through this hard time.
1. Discuss with caution
The way you discuss the matter with your spouse is fundamental. If you have not yet broached the subject, decide how you will talk about it. Try to remain calm and inflict as little emotional damage as possible. Be prepared in case the discussion becomes heated.
2. Housing arrangements
After the divorce, you will not be living with your partner. Make plans for the housing arrangements as part of your divorce decision checklist. Will the children live with you, or your spouse? Include budget plans according to the housing arrangements. Make a budget out of your expenses and income.
3. Get a PO box
Getting yourself a PO box should be an essential part of your divorce paperwork checklist. If you are going to change your house after the divorce, you should open a post office box so that your important paperwork may not be lost.
You should get a PO box immediately and have your mail redirected to it when your divorce starts.
4. Think about the future of your children
If you have children, it is essential to figure out all the issues related to them. Explaining the situation to your kids is crucial. They need to know what their parents have decided. So, you need to figure out how you will tell them about what is happening.
There are loads of other things you need to figure out as well:
Related Reading: The Negative Impact of Divorce on a Child’s Growth and Development
All of these questions should be answered even as you prepare the checklist for divorce.
5. Get an attorney
Research the attorneys in your area and then choose the one you deem most suited to your needs. After you have hired an attorney, make sure you convey your needs and demands to them properly so that they can safeguard your legal rights and proceed in a way that caters to your interests.
6. Get emotional support
Having people you can talk to when going through a hard time, makes it a lot easier to cope up with everything. Start talking to people who went through divorces and find out how they managed. Don’t hesitate to ask for a lending hand from your family and friends. If need be, even talk to a therapist who can help you with the emotional chaos due to the divorce.
7. Organize your paperwork
You should gather all your paperwork in one place. Make copies of your documents so that you won’t lose them when needed. Make a list of all your financial assets as part of your divorce financial checklist so that you can manage the money matters properly even as you face a huge task in dealing with this emotionally difficult time.
Related Reading: How to Get a Divorce Certificate
8. Pack beforehand
Divorce preparation isn’t easy but it is advisable to pack your things beforehand. If the divorce becomes heated, you may not be able to have access to your things for a while.
9. Credit report
Another thing on your divorce preparation checklist should be getting a credit report. Get your credit report at the beginning and the end of the divorce. It will help you take care of all the debts that you may have to pay and avoid any future hassle.
10. Change your passwords
Create a new email account and change your passwords on all of your previous accounts. Since your spouse may already know the passwords, it is always a good thing to change them to protect your privacy.
Most couples share a car. The fact that only one of the spouses will have the car at the time of filing for the divorce should be kept in mind.
12. Start putting money aside
How can you prepare for divorce financially?
Divorce is going to cost you quite a bit. Make sure you have your expenses covered, such as attorney’s fees, etc. Make sure you have enough for your daily expenses as well as your new house if you need to move out.
Divorce is not an easy task. But if you take out the time to plan it with a divorce planning checklist, the process will not be costly or as complicated. You need to figure out what is going to happen to your house and your kids.
You need to set aside some money to cover the financial expenditure. By doing an accurate and honest assessment of your lifestyle, you can be more prepared for your future as an individual. Keeping the above divorce preparation checklist in your mind will help you get through the difficult time ahead.
Related Reading: 7 Reasons Why People Get Divorced