Divorce is one of the most distressing experiences in a woman’s life. Once you have made the decision to get a divorce you will need to prepare. Here’s what every female in Gwinnett County needs to know when going through a divorce.
PREPARE FINANCIALLY FOR DIVORCE
Many households rely on two incomes to support their lifestyles. Whether you earn your own income or have been dependent on your husband, you will need to have your own financial resources. Now is the time to open your own individual bank account.
You need to be able to sustain yourself and your children in case your husband withdraws financial contributions to your household. This is especially true if you have children.
Eliminate or scale back expenses to what you absolutely need and bank the rest. This is also the time to reduce or eliminate credit card spending and pay down debt as much as you can.
If your spouse does not voluntarily agree to provide support, you can petition the court for alimony and child support. You will also want to take steps to protect any of your financial assets.
Begin gathering financial documents that will support your case.
Gather pay stubs and other verification of income and assets (both yours & his). Organize utility bills, mortgage information, car payments, medical bills, child care costs, school tuition and other financial liabilities.
GET ORGANIZED FOR DIVORCE
Another way of getting yourself organized is to keep a binder and calendar of all things related to your divorce.
Use the calendar to keep track of visitation dates and appointments related to your children. This information could be used to document your husband’s level of involvement in your children’s lives.
This binder can also house correspondence between you and your spouse or your attorneys. Keep documents in chronological order.
Remember, up until this point, you both have access to any marital accounts including bank/investment accounts, retirement accounts, etc… gather as much of that information as you can directly from the source; don’t be left relying on your husband’s word for it!
MENTALLY PREPARE FOR DIVORCE
One part of getting ready for the divorce process that is often overlooked is preparing yourself mentally.
Find out as much as you can about the divorce process. It will help you know what to expect and reduce the anxiety that can arise when you are facing an unfamiliar situation. Also, remember that every divorce is different, so while it’s good to seek encouragement and support from others who have been there, don’t expect your outcome to be the same.
Make a plan that follows the steps of the divorce process and marks important milestones on your journey. This will help you remain focused on the things that are in your control and give you an idea of what to focus on and look forward to.
You should also maintain as much normalcy in your life as you can. Stick to your work and home schedules.
Keep regular eating, exercise and sleep habits. Continue to spend time with family and friends. If you have children, keep their meals, school and extracurricular routines as consistent as possible.
Divorce is both a heartbreaking end and a new beginning. Preparing yourself, getting organized and keeping routines will help you successfully manage this challenging phase of your life.