How Can Someone Prepare For An Impending Divorce Or Separation?
When preparing for an impending divorce or separation, proper planning is always necessary in order to protect yourself and any children who may be involved. You need to consider money, debts, property, custody, visitation and other matters in order to ensure that you will be able to continue providing for yourself and your children whether you are the husband or wife, father or mother. In some cases, you also need to prepare yourself for any emotional or stressful conditions to yourself, your children and your spouse or partner that may result in the event of separation or divorce.
If you or your spouse are thinking about separation or divorce, it is best to seek out an experienced family law attorney who is willing to sit down and talk to you about your options. The more information you can bring to the initial meeting may better prepare you should the separation or divorce becomes reality. At the initial attorney meeting, you would probably be best served by having an attorney discuss with you what type of proof of income, assets or property that might be helpful for you to find or secure before the separation occurs or divorce is filed. I have heard clients’ tell me some spouses will destroy or hide certain information once they learn of an impending divorce, so it is best to take preventative measures against that possibility if you want to protect what is yours or your child’s. A good, capable attorney experienced in family law can discuss options with you as to where helpful records or proof might be found and can help you to trace the location of certain assets.
More often than not, divorce cases that involve young or minor children are highly emotional. It is always best to sit down with an attorney, discuss your current needs and future intentions with regard to your children, the other parent, and decide how custody and child support will be arranged. If custody is an issue, you need to discuss a budget for the custody battle if custody terms are not agreed. Further, you should go over with the attorney what may be important you to try to secure in advance and in the event of a property division or a custody fight, for example, it may be important to secure family photographs or videos and to talk with possible future witnesses in order to secure information that supports your wants and needs.
Are There Benefits To Filing For Divorce Before A Spouse?
If there has to be a divorce, the spouse that files first goes first in presenting the case to the judge assigned to decide your case. Going first, lets you tell your version or side of the story first, if there are disputed issues that need to be presented and decided. This can be important in some cases. Additionally, if you know that your spouse may attempt to mislead the court in terms of the marital assets or the children, then it may be in your benefit to file first. Filing first will also allow you to obtain temporary restraining orders without your spouse being able to contest them upfront, which may be necessary if there is a history of domestic violence. You can also obtain orders regarding the property and children if the court deems it necessary. However, filing before the other spouse is aware of a divorce decision may lead to an unexpected upheaval in the family.
At the initial conference, we discuss with our clients the benefits and drawbacks of filing first in their particular case. With so many families being mobile nowadays, sometimes you file first to establish where the county or state in which the case will be handled. These are some of the reasons why it’s important that you talk to an experienced attorney as early as possible about whether or not you should file first.
How Long Does A Divorce Typically Take To Get Finalized In Texas?
In Texas, a divorce can take anywhere from 61 days to two years depending on the specific family issues that are involved. When a divorce is filed, the court requires a cooling off period because sometimes people reconcile within the first 60 days. During the time between filing for divorce and the signing of a decree of divorce by the judge, there are only very basic orders in place regarding the protection of the family, property or assets, child support, alimony, or child visitation. There may be a lot of issues that will need to be decided upon if there are disputes regarding any of those issues.
You should ask your attorney whether or not filing for temporary orders is something that would help your situation immediately or resolve the disputed issues faster. A temporary order is a process where the judge has a hearing to determine whether or not an order should be entered during and until the final issues are resolved through the lawyers, or by mediation or a trial. If there is no agreed term regarding the divorce, child issues, child visitation, child support and property division, then the judge will make a final decision for the parties. Ultimately, the length of time of the divorce process will depend on the specific details of your case, which is why it is important to go over all of the issues with an attorney at the beginning of the case.
For more information on Preparing For An Impending Divorce, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (210) 225-2828 today.
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