Common Mistakes During Divorce and How to Avoid Them
Once a divorce has been brought up in a marriage, emotions will likely begin to run high, and more conflicts may arise. This can create a situation where mistakes are more likely to be made. These mistakes can seriously affect your divorce case, potentially resulting in a more emotionally draining divorce that takes longer to finalize. Avoiding these mistakes is the best way to get the most ideal results from your divorce.
Hoping for Reconciliation
If issues arise in your marriage, therapy and counseling can be great resources to help repair these fissures and heal the wounds. However, the time for this extra effort in your marriage is before divorce is considered, and especially before consultations with lawyers have been scheduled. Once spouses have initiated divorce proceedings, the likelihood of reconciliation is small. Your time would be best applied to figuring out how your life post-marriage will look.
Hiring an Inexperienced Lawyer
Lawyers tend to specialize in different areas of law. Although the attorneys you have hired for other areas, like your business, wills and trusts, or real estate, are likely excellent in their field, they may not be the best option for your divorce. Your current attorneys may be able to refer you to a divorce attorney, but that should be the extent of their involvement in the legal aspects of your divorce.
Not Setting Clear Goals
It is impossible to reach your goals if you fail to make any. With the help of an attorney, you should take time to establish what you would like to achieve through the divorce process. You need to take time to define what your must-haves are, as well as the things you are willing to compromise on. This will help you save time as you move into negotiations and mediation, as well as ensure that you are more satisfied with the outcome of the divorce.
Having Expectations That Are Unrealistic
You may be a highly accomplished individual who smashes every challenge in front of you, and you believe this will also apply to your divorce. However, there are rules and guidelines that must be followed in a divorce, regardless of how you want the case to go. An experienced attorney can help you get the best possible outcome from your divorce, but it is important to acknowledge that divorce is a process of compromising with your spouse to ensure positive outcomes for both. An attorney will be able to explain how to set realistic expectations for the divorce and the best ways to achieve them.
Speaking Poorly of Your Spouse to Your Children
Putting down or disrespecting your spouse in front of your children can cause feelings of guilt, confusion, depression, and insecurity. When your child sees you insulting their other parent, they are likely to internalize and interpret the action as also being critical toward them. Although you may have many feelings about your soon-to-be ex-spouse, it is best not to mention them in a negative way to your children. This will prevent you from unintentionally harming your children.
Focusing Only on the Negatives
A divorce will change your life in many ways, and these changes can often be seen as only negative things. It can be easy to focus on the things you are losing in the divorce instead of looking toward the things you are gaining. You will have freedom from an unfulfilling relationship and can now explore your life without considering marriage as a factor. It is important to look on the bright side and see how your life has changed for the better.
Not Having an Advocate
It may be tempting to save money in a divorce by not hiring an attorney. However, the processes can be complex and confusing, and failing to do them all correctly can have negative effects. An attorney will protect your interests in court and ensure the proceedings are handled correctly. They can also provide emotional support during this difficult time, lending strength and courage even if you do not feel those emotions.
Q: Is There an Alternative to Litigation in a Divorce?
A: Absolutely. A couple can use mediation to discuss how the divorce should play out and which assets should be allocated to each person. This process involves the couple meeting over several sessions with a neutral mediator to settle the terms of the divorce. Mediation is considered faster, cheaper, and fairer than litigation.
Q: Is Divorce the Only Way to End a Marriage?
A: No. In some limited cases, the marriage may be able to be annulled. The difference between an annulment and a divorce is how they are legally classified after the process is complete. In an annulment, the law sees the marriage as invalid and treats it as though it never happened. A divorce legally separates two people and defines them as single, so they can legally get married to other people.
Q: How Long Will My Divorce Take?
A: The timeline for your divorce is entirely dependent on your exact situation. California has a six-month waiting period, so your divorce will take at least six months. Your ability to mediate with your spouse and settle any disputes will decrease the time it takes, as you can avoid the lengthy process of litigation. Ultimately, your divorce can take any amount of time between six months and many years.
Q: Do I Have to Prove Infidelity or Other Bad Behaviors to Get a Divorce?
A: No, you do not have to prove some wrongdoing on the part of your spouse to get a divorce. California is a no-fault divorce state, meaning that having irreconcilable differences can be enough justification for a divorce. Bad behavior, like infidelity, will also not change how marital assets are divided between the spouses.
Avoiding Mistakes With an Experienced Attorney
The experienced attorneys at Bickford Blado & Botros can help you make the right choices in your divorce, saving you from any negative fallout from making a poor choice. A divorce is not an easy process, and it can only help to have a knowledgeable team at your back, fighting for your rights. Contact us today so that we can guide you through the process.
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