If your marriage is in shambles, divorce may seem like your only viable option. While we firmly believe that no one should stay in an unhappy or abusive marriage, it is important to recognize that filing for divorce in Lebanon MO is a complex legal process that should not be undertaken lightly. Here are a few things we have discovered that many people do not know about divorce.
1. No One “Wins” A Divorce Case
In many lawsuits, there is a “winner” and a “loser.” Though divorce is a legal process, however, there are no winners and losers in divorce cases. In divorce, the Court is looking for a way to divide all assets and responsibilities as equitably as possible and award custody to the parent who will best be able to provide for the child’s best interests. By accepting that you cannot “beat” your spouse in your divorce, you will be able to approach the situation more cooperatively and find better solutions for everyone.
2. Your Ex Is Not Your Child’s Ex
Divorce is hard on the spouses, but it is especially hard on the children. Their parents are separating for reasons they may not understand, and tensions in the household are high. It is important to recognize that while you may no longer wish to see or speak to your spouse, your child may not feel the same way. You should never use your children as collateral to coerce or threaten your spouse. Remember that you and your spouse have your personal issues that must be dealt with directly; getting your children involved in matters that do not concern them will only make things more challenging for everyone.
3. The Process Takes Time – And You Should Let It
Generally, the decision to get divorced only comes after months (or even years) of fights, arguments, and disagreements. With so much time already invested, many divorcing couples want to get the process over with as quickly as possible. All divorces take time, however, and it’s important to let them progress at their own pace. Rushing the process can cause you to make hasty decisions that will not benefit you in the long run. Take deep breaths and let things progress as they need to.
4. Divorce Affects Other Legal Aspects, Too
Divorce is a family law matter, but it will affect other legal aspects after it is all said and done. The most important area to address after your divorce has been finalized is your estate plan. For example, many couples list their spouses as the one who will make important decisions regarding their healthcare if they become incapacitated and as the one who will inherit all of their belongings if they pass away. After your divorce, you will want to update your will and trusts to reflect your current wishes.
5. Financially Speaking, You Have To Look At The Big Picture
Divorce will have a huge impact on your finances. Many couples end up in a divorce court fighting over their shared assets, not realizing that litigation may end up draining the very assets they are vying for. Don’t dismiss the possibility of mediation before giving it a chance. Also, be cautious about taking out new debt while in the middle of your divorce. In addition to covering the costs of your divorce, you will have to have the funds to set up a new household and/or maintain your household on your own after the divorce is finalized. It can be easy to get wrapped up in the little details, but it’s important to look at the bigger picture.
Don’t Navigate Your Divorce Alone
Working through divorce can be complex and overwhelming. If you believe you and your spouse may be nearing divorce, make arrangements now for your free consultation with one of our Missouri divorce attorneys. We will help you evaluate your situation and determine the strategy that will best work for you.