When you go through a marriage dissolution, you’re probably going to want to understand how it works and learn about all the dangers that may occur. Divorce is never easy, so it’s worthwhile to study the process in advance to be fully prepared. We have compiled a list of 14 significant pitfalls that you might fall victim to during the termination of a marriage.
Unfortunately, being in a severe emotional state, spouses often neglect to study the law surrounding marriage dissolution. And this can be a fatal mistake, since it could entail large financial expenses. Ignorance of the law does not exempt a person from this responsibility. Therefore, as soon as you are separated from your soon-to-be ex, take the time to collect information. On the internet, there are many articles, videos, and even books on how to properly dissolve a marriage. You can find loopholes that will help you get through the divorce quickly and easily. Also, if this dissolution process is happening to you for the first time and you are completely confused, leave emotions for later. Consult with experts and understand all the nuances of termination. It will really save your money and keep you from fateful steps. As they say, ‘he who owns the information, owns the world’. Follow this link to learn more about the divorce process.
Starting Negotiation Too Soon
It is normal to want to dissolve your marriage as quickly as possible and in a peaceful way. Many spouses conclude that it is better to start negotiating instead of going to war in court. However, negotiations need to be carefully prepared. It is not unusual for a husband and wife to begin discussing the primary conditions of divorce too soon, without being ready for it. Unfortunately, this rush leads to negative consequences. And the discussion turns into a fight, which grows into litigation and the desire to destroy each other. This also has high financial costs.
If you decide to end the marriage peacefully and want to avoid litigation, first carefully prepare for the discussion. Set goals that you want to achieve as a result of this process, and make a list of what you are willing to give up to find a compromise. You must have a clear strategy and plan of action before you sit down at the negotiating table. Moreover, you should have a full picture of the family’s financial situation. Therefore, first, collect all the necessary information and only after that, proceed to the negotiations.
Hidden Expenses When Using a Lawyer
Many people turn to lawyers for help to get them through the process of divorce. Even if the marriage dissolution is uncontested and the spouses are in agreement, they still want someone to do all the paperwork for them. On the one hand, it is right to entrust a specialist to prepare documents. On the other, you can incur additional payments because the divorce will cost a whole bunch of money. Did you know that a lawyer can include, in the cost of his services, the secretary, office stationery or phone calls? Yes, the services of lawyers can be expensive and go up to $3,000 for divorce paper preparation. And what can you do in this case? Doing all the paperwork yourself is fraught with its own risks.
A great alternative is an online divorce. Thanks to this service, you can get prepared divorce papers right off the internet, saving money along the way. The system will guide you step-by-step through the dissolution process and ask you questions about the marriage and its termination. In a couple of business days, you will receive completed papers to your email. Online divorce is an affordable and convenient way to prepare for a divorce without the help of a lawyer. In addition, the price of this kind of service is much more affordable; it varies depending on the company, typically from $150 – $750. But remember that online divorce is only suitable for couples who’ve agreed on all key terms of the dissolution and are applying for an uncontested divorce. You can find more information about online divorce here.
Not preparing for the worst scenario
In the process of divorce, you can face many unpleasant surprises if there is no planning. Therefore, think over in advance all the details of the marriage dissolution, while preparing for the worst outcome. Clarify for yourself where you will live and how to earn money, whether you have enough funds to rent a new home, or whether you’ll have to look for a temporary fix. Do not underestimate the situation, because poor planning can lead to additional costs. Understand in advance how you will live without your soon-to-be ex. Also, don’t forget that there are many volunteer movements that help women in stressful situations. If your divorce falls into this category, look at what services you could get from these organizations. For example, some shelters provide good clothes for women so that they can appear in court or for an interview. Or they provide gift cards that allow you to purchase basic necessities. And of course, when you are preparing for the worst, always hope for the best.
Ignoring tax consequences
In the case of divorce, it is essential to understand that tax implications significantly affect your financial position after a final decision is made. Especially with modern tax policy. Many financial experts say that most women are suffering from recent changes in tax law, as the amount of alimony has decreased. Why does this hurt women? According to the law, either spouse can apply for spousal support, but as the stats show, among all divorce cases, only 3 per cent of men receive alimony.
In addition, if you divide a joint house or any other marital property that you plan to sell, you will also receive tax consequences. What is there to do in this situation? No case involving taxation is easy, and there is no universal solution. It is best to contact a specialist who already has experience dealing with similar cases. If you spend money on a professional now, it will bring you great benefits down the road.
Using a Lawyer With the Lowest Rate
Let’s suppose that your divorce is contested and you’ve already studied the cost of attorney services and plan to save money on this front. And this is quite a natural desire. Nevertheless, are you sure that the cheapest lawyer will be able to protect your interests? Or will the sharks break him in court? When a divorce goes through a lawsuit, an attorney must be your reliable defender. Thanks to his skilled assistance, the divorce can be completed on terms favourable for you. Good things cannot be cheap. Therefore, when you choose a lawyer with the lowest hourly rate, it’s likely that he doesn’t have enough practice or does not do his job very well. So this is not the best option to save if you are going to appear before a judge. You’re better off finding a professional. It will cost more, but the divorce will be completed in your favour.
Living in a House You Can’t Afford
Spouses do not always sell the marital house, especially if there are shared young children in the family. And after the divorce, the main custodian and the child continue to live there. Many people see their home as a place of stability and protection. However, it is worth remembering that after the dissolution of a marriage, financial situations tend to change for the worse. If earlier the income was at least from two sources, now only one spouse will have to maintain the house. Unfortunately, the cost of housing could be too high and drive you into debt. If the home is too expensive, it is better to sell it and find something more affordable. Of course, here you will need the help of a realtor who will get you a reasonable price.
Not Working on Your Career
Even now, many women still fully devote themselves to family and home, even though they have long had ostensibly equal rights as men. And this is a huge mistake. Of course, maintaining comfort inside the house and spending time with your family is definitely important. But in the modern world, a woman should also be financially independent. Because different negative situations like divorce or death of the husband may affect her future. In addition, you should not rely solely on alimony, seeing as courts rarely rule in favour of life-long support. If you are separating from your spouse, this is an excellent time to think about your future financial life. You may need to get additional education or skills. Your career is a way to achieve self-realization and independence.
Not requiring your ex to remove your name from loan documents
In marriage, many spouses take out loans, and this is a common practice. When they are faced with a divorce, they must divide their mortgages and determine who is responsible for each piece of debt. But it should be understood that the settlement agreement, or any other contract regarding the division of liability for debts, will not save you from your husband’s mortgage obligations. Credit experts say that if your husband delays at least one payment, you will also be responsible for this, even despite the settlement agreement. Therefore, you must require your spouse to remove your name from loan documents. There are two ways to do this: either pay off the loan or remove your name from the papers by refinancing the mortgage.
Underestimating Property Value
In the process of divorce, many spouses conclude that it is better to sell their joint property and divide the money received. This is far from the worst option, but you need to calculate the value of assets correctly. Many online services help estimate the value of real estate. And they are quite popular. But unfortunately, these websites do not take into account various factors in pricing, and they often produce an incorrect amount that could be significantly lower than the true market value. And therein lies the danger; by relying on these services, you can lose a lot of money. Therefore, if you decide to get rid of a piece of property, you should entrust it to a specialist who can determine the real value of the house and find appropriate buyers.
Mediation is an excellent opportunity to find a compromise for any kind of divorce. This service is paid; however, you should not neglect it. Mediators are the third side of a divorce, the purpose of which is to find a solution that will satisfy both spouses. In this case, the mediators never take the side of either the wife or husband. In addition, it also makes sense to use this service if there are shared young children, so that you achieve the best custody conditions for the child. Mediators can be involved in resolving disputes regarding the division of property or alimony. And note: if you leave these questions only for the judge to decide, one of the spouses runs the risk of being in a bad position. With mediation, the situation is different, because an expert is trying to find a solution that will satisfy the interests of both the husband and wife.
Not Fighting for What is Yours
Unfortunately, divorce is a struggle for survival, especially if the marriage lasted a long time. And no matter how sad it may sound, you need to recognize reality. You must fight for your rights in a divorce situation, and for all that you are entitled to according to the law. But many spouses begin to abandon these pursuits, fearing that they’ll ruin the relationship with their ex. Now, you do need to maintain a friendly line of communication after the divorce, especially if you have shared children. But this does not mean that you should refuse alimony or accept a small part of the property just so that your spouse does not take offence. Fight for everything you have the right to fight for, because this is your financial stability in the future.
Not Planning Your Budget Before and After Divorce
Divorce hits the wallet hard, even if the spouses do not participate in litigation. In order not to stay in the red, start planning your expenses and income even before the case is brought to court. It is necessary to develop a schedule of payments, as well as establish the risks. This will evaluate your real financial situation. Perhaps your expenses will begin to exceed your income for a while, and you will be able to determine certain items that you can sacrifice for the time being, or just buy cheaper versions of them. Budget planning should even include the period after the divorce, since you will need time to recover.
Treating Your Friends and Relatives like Consultants
When you inform your loved ones about divorce, they will start supporting you in every way. And this is good; the help of friends is important in cases of marriage dissolution. But relatives will also begin giving you a million tips, which are not always right, and sometimes can be downright harmful. If your relatives are not divorce attorneys, then you should filter the information that they give you. In the end, you are risking your real estate and bank savings when you ignore the help of a specialist and rely only on the opinion of your friends and family. If you are not sure what to do, listen to the advice of experts and people whose job it is to know how the divorce system works.