Divorce is a process.
When approached with the right attitude and preparation, couples can go separate ways with a possible settlement that meets the needs and demands of both parties.
Are you considering meditation or, will you endure litigation?
With either route, there are basic tenets that will help ease the divorce negotiation process and lead to a successful outcome.
DO YOUR RESEARCH
Make sure your information is in order. This will be one of the most important tasks when first collecting materials and records.
Gather a list of all your assets, including:
- mutual funds
- bank accounts
- retirement funds
- real estate
Compile information on your debts, including credit card balances, mortgages and home equity loans, private loans, student loans, and all other financially binding contracts. Organizing this information will save you money and time in the negotiation process.
CONTROL YOUR EMOTIONS
Staying in control of your emotions will help to make sound decisions with clarity. Sharing hurtful words, or opening old wounds will not help either party negotiate through the divorce process.
Get support from friends and family to ensure that you are composed, calm and levelheaded. Separating emotions from your marital possessions will keep you focused on your best financial interests.
CONSIDER THE CHILDREN
Your children may not be involved in your meetings with the attorney. Kids are wildly intuitive and may be affected by negative emotions or energy surrounding the divorce process.
You should never discuss the terms of your case with your children, no matter how mature they are, or how close you are with them. Whenever possible, it is best to answer their questions together as a couple.
Remember that you are doing this for the good of the children, so put your feelings aside and make a concerted effort to answer their questions and ease their fears. By staying in control of your emotions, you improve negotiation.
Also, most counties in Georgia require both parents to complete a parenting seminar before your case can be finalized. Pay attention to the tips and information provided in that seminar; most people find the class very helpful and informative.
You will also need to make sure that your negotiations include future needs of the children through the age of 18.
Always be willing to negotiate and communicate your thoughts and ideas.
Settlement negotiations, when done properly through legal counsel, are not later admissible at trial. Therefore, you and your attorney can make calculated offers that the Judge will never know about in the event that your case is forced to go to trial.
Also, never be afraid to ask for what you want! You may be surprised what the other party will agree to.
GET HELP FROM THOSE WHO HAVE THE RIGHT EXPERIENCE
The divorce process is challenging for all to navigate; yet preparation is key. Do you have an attorney to help address your concerns? If you are considering divorce, consult with a qualified legal professional to assist you through the steps.