Miami Family Law Firm Advises Clients on Preparing for Divorce
Forethought and groundwork can be key to a successful settlement
If you’ve decided to dissolve your marriage, it’s important to do a bit of reverse-engineering. Imagine what you’d like your life to look like in two to five years. Where are you living? How are you supporting yourself? Where are your children living, and what are they up to? When you’ve got that image clear in your mind, ask yourself, “How do I get from here to there?” If you have no idea, you’re not alone, and that’s where we come in. At Rafool, LLC, our family law firm helps clients like you resolve their divorce issues on terms that allow them to grasp the future they’ve imagined. When you retain our services in advance of your divorce, we can help you prepare step by step to make the process work for you, so you can achieve your desired results.
Steps to take for positive divorce preparation
Divorce is not about abandoning the past; it’s about embracing the future. Ideally, you should want to be in a better position after your divorce than you are in now. Here are a few steps you can take to enhance your chances of success:
- Do your own research — Learn all you can from various sources about the divorce process. Make notes of various issues in the law and the legal process that you want clarified.
- Consult a reliable divorce attorney — Take what you’ve learned to a divorce lawyer who is experienced, knowledgeable and accessible. Ask questions about aspects of the process, such as filing, grounds for divorce, and uncontested versus contested divorce. Gauge your comfort level with the lawyer and the confidence he or she inspires.
- Organize your finances — Take an inventory of your financial documents, including your bank accounts, 401(k)s, stock portfolio, businesses, tax records, insurance policies, mortgage, credit card balances, and so on. Look through your expenses for the past year or so and draw up a budget so you have a clear idea of how much money you would need to sustain your standard of living.
- Resolve (as much as possible) your emotions — Unresolved anger, frustration or regret can derail divorce settlement negotiations. It’s important to get in touch with your emotions, whether they are buried deep inside or stirring on the surface, and process them. Don’t be afraid to seek counseling if you need to. When you free yourself from hurt of the past, you’re ready to focus on the future.
- Choose the divorce process that’s most appropriate — There is no “best” divorce process; there’s only the one that best fits your circumstances and enables you to achieve your goals. If you’re seeking a quick settlement with a cooperative spouse, the collaborative process can work. If you need to protect your financial interests from a spouse who wants to make you pay in more ways than one, then you’ll probably have to litigate your divorce aggressively.
- Discuss divorce with your spouse — The timing for this talk depends on your circumstances. If you and your spouse still communicate easily enough, you can discuss divorce before you file. Some couples even negotiate their divorce settlement before filing. On the other hand, if you are in an abusive relationship, you might have to get a restraining order and have your spouse removed from the home before any hint of divorce.
In many situations, however, by carefully considering your options, you can avoid antagonizing your spouse unnecessarily and lay the foundation for a smooth divorce process.
Steps for defensive divorce preparation
Often, we see clients who are concerned that a spouse will act unscrupulously during divorce with regard to finances or their children. In such cases, your divorce preparation must include steps to protect your financial and parental rights. Getting hold of financial records before your spouse knows a divorce is coming may prevent him or her from making a fraudulent transfer of assets to put them out of your reach. If you think your spouse may try to get sole custody of your children, you can take positive steps to improve your standing as a potential custodian. We are happy to provide the guidance you need in these crucial areas.
Schedule a consultation on divorce preparation with a family law specialist in Miami
If you are concerned about how to make the Florida divorce process work for you, Rafool, LLC can help. For advice on proven strategies, call us at 305-567-9400 or contact our Miami office online to schedule a consultation.