With so much going on in the world today with COVID, employment uncertainty, financial difficulties, and self-isolation, couples are under tremendous stress. Even the healthiest and happiest of relationships are being put to the test. If divorce has crossed your mind, consider these 5 things to do before filing for divorce in MA.
1 – Seek Counseling
Marriage counseling or individual counseling can be extremely beneficial during this time. It can help you find pathways to reconciliation or solidify your decision to get divorced. By going through the counseling process, you can better understand your emotions and avoid making rash decisions. Counseling can also help with the emotional and psychological aspects of a divorce itself, whether you are initiating the divorce or trying to understand your spouse’s desire to divorce.
2 – Organize Finances
One of the most important things to do before filing for divorce is to gather information about your joint and individual income, assets, and debts. In many marriages, one spouse is responsible for the finances while the other knows little or even nothing about the matter. If you’re not aware of the family’s finances, it’s time to get up-to-speed. This is essential for your own protection. Not everyone is great with numbers but, thankfully, there are many online resources to improve your financial literacy. Don’t be scared to seek professional assistance as well.
3 – Gather Important Documents
In addition to financial documentation, gather other important documents. This includes passports, social security cards, prenuptial agreements, deeds or titles to property, etc. Keep originals of anything that exclusively belongs to you and make copies of everything else. Should you proceed with a divorce, you will need this information. Gathering it ahead of time also prevents your spouse from destroying documents, should things become contentious.
4 – Consult with a MA Divorce Attorney
Taking the right steps early in the divorce process can avoid complications later. Consult with a Massachusetts divorce attorney early on for valuable advice and guidance on your case. Every divorce is unique and having an advocate who understand the legal process and potential pitfalls will ensure a better outcome for you.
5 – Prepare a Strategy
Your attorney will help you prepare a legal strategy, but you must also have an overall strategy prepared for during and after divorce. Where will you live? Who will you turn to for emotional support? What financial resources will be available to you? How will you transition from your current situation to your future life? Sitting down to think about some of these things is important, even before you start a divorce.
Summary of Things to Do Before Filing for Divorce in MA
As with any major life change, understanding your options and having a plan in place can directly impact outcomes. The above are just a few possible things to do before filing for divorce in MA. Your divorce attorney may suggest additional steps to take based on your personal circumstances. Although every divorce is unique, relying on professionals to help you with the legal, financial, and emotional aspects of divorce can be a huge help during what will be a challenging process.
If you are thinking about divorce, schedule a consultation with our team. We will take the time to understand your circumstances and provide personalized recommendations. With over 26 years of experience with divorces in Massachusetts, we can leverage our knowledge to help you through the process.