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Although marriage starts with many hopes and dreams, things don’t always work out later on down the road. For whatever reason, a couple may need to end their marriage and get a divorce.
Divorce can be a long and tedious process. If children are involved, things get even trickier as custody issues need to be taken care of. There is a lot of paperwork to deal with and many important decisions to be made, and stress levels are likely to run high during this time.
If you are going through a divorce or considering divorce, it is vital that you know about the process and how to handle each step. As you start the divorce process, here are some facts and tips to keep in mind:
Learn about divorce laws in your state. These can differ from state to state, so know what to expect in you area.
Before the decision to go through a divorce is made, one spouse will often move out for a trial separation. During this period, the couple will choose whether or not they want to actually get a divorce. If you are going through this, you and your spouse need to take the time to carefully consider the situation and decide for sure if divorce is what you really want.
The first step in the divorce process is for one spouse to notify the other with a petition. Here, a spouse will include why he or she wants a divorce. These are the grounds for the divorce.
There are two kinds of divorce grounds: no-fault and fault. In a no-fault divorce, no one is blamed for the divorce, and the reason could be described as “irreconcilable differences.” In the case of a fault divorce, however, the writer of the petition will claim that the other spouse is at fault. This may be due to infidelity, abuse, imprisonment, or another reason given by the petitioning spouse.
Remember that getting angry or upset during this process will only make things more difficult. Try to be calm when you are around your spouse, and avoid needless arguments.
Consult a divorce lawyer and/or mediator. A lawyer can give you an extensive explanation of the divorce process, and can help you decide on a legal plan. They will help you deal with complicated property matters, custody issues, and other details that you might have trouble handling on your own. Mediators can assist couples in the divorce process by acting as a neutral party that helps the couple make important decisions.
Have proper documentation ready. Being prepared with financial information, social security numbers, real estate information, and other important documents will ensure that things move faster.
Although the divorce process can take a while, having an idea of what to expect will let you be more prepared for the ordeal. To fully understand the process, consult a lawyer to guide you through the steps of divorce. It can be especially difficult to try to handle a divorce without help.