In a perfect world every marriage would last a lifetime, and no one would ever need to file for divorce. In the real world, infidelity, financial issues and distrust are all very real problems, and they can irretrievably shatter a marriage.
If you believe that your own marriage is at an end, there are some things you should do before asking your spouse for a divorce. The dissolution of a marriage is fraught with emotional and financial peril, and the steps you take now can protect your interests later.
The first thing you should do if you are considering leaving the marriage is call a good divorce attorney. Research the top-rated divorce attorney in your area, it is important to protect your rights as the marriage comes to an end and an experienced lawyer will be able to guide you in the right direction.
After you have a good lawyer lined up, it is important to review your finances and the finances of your soon to be ex-spouse. It is common for one spouse to take the lead in financial matters – paying all the bills and making most of the investment decisions. If that describes your marriage, you need to bring yourself up to speed quickly – before you file for divorce.
You do not want to run off with the joint checking account or try to hide assets from your spouse, but you do need to know where you stand financially. Knowing how much you and your spouse have in financial assets will help ensure you get a fair settlement when the divorce papers have been filed.
If your soon to be ex-spouse has anger issues or other problems that could put your safety at risk, you need to plan carefully. Asking for a divorce is a serious matter, and you do not want to put yourself in danger. You may need to have family members or friends standing by, or ask for the divorce in a public place. If you have any doubts about his or her reaction, you need to take some proactive steps to protect yourself.
Of course having a place to go is important, and the time to line up that safe haven is now – before you ask for a divorce. You will need to think about whether you plan to ask your spouse to leave the family home or if you will be the one making the exit. Lining up a safe place to go is the best way to protect yourself and your interests.
Filing for divorce is never an easy decision, and it is not one to be taken lightly. Knowing the steps to take before the filing is vital, and the steps outlined above can give you a good place to start.