Before The Divorce: Advice from a Lake County Divorce Attorney
The time directly before a divorce is an important one for any person looking to embark on a new life. What you do during that time could be critical in determining how your divorce unfolds. The most important thing to know prior to a divorce is that a divorce attorney in Lake County can help you immensely. Going through this process without legal counsel is often a failed endeavor. However, this does not mean that all the responsibility falls into the hands of your Lake County attorney. Before you even meet with legal counsel, your list of duties begins.
Start by identifying the financial situation of both you and your spouse. An integral part of any divorce is the division of assets. In many instances, spouses will attempt to hide or conceal assets. Finding bank statements and financial records for both you and your spouse could be key to preventing yourself from being exploited.
This is also a good time to look at your prenuptial agreement and see what you are entitled or not entitled to receive. That agreement could save a lot of stress and worry during the divorce process, as it clearly states what belongs to you.
You will also need to get used to the language associated with a divorce. You will hear common terms all too often such as marital property, the marital estate, and even corroborative witnesses. Whoever files for the divorce is always termed the plaintiff. While the other party may be called the defendant, it’s not necessarily the same as being a defendant in a criminal case.
A divorce is not finalized until a judge issues a divorce decree. Prior to that, there could be temporary orders in regards to child and spousal support or temporary custody. Children are often a focal point in a divorce, and there may need to be arrangements made while your divorce is waiting to be finalized. Think about living arrangements and where you see your child residing. It is an important point to consider before starting down the path toward a divorce.
It is also important to know that not all divorce cases have to be settled by litigation. It is often a much cheaper and easier process when terms can be settled amicably. Mediation is one way to settle the end of a marriage without it being a contested divorce. That still does not mean you should neglect hiring a divorce attorney in Lake County. If there is a way to settle without heading into a courtroom, that should be talked about and agreed upon by both spouses before filing for a divorce.
Before you move forward in a decision for a divorce, start by doing your part in the process. That includes gathering all your necessary financial and legal documents, including reviewing your prenuptial agreement, while also coming up with a plan that emphasizes your goals in ending a marriage. A Lake County attorney will help you attempt to achieve those goals, but you need to understand your case and what kind of realistic results you expect from your divorce.