The 7 Steps to Take Immediately After Deciding You Want a Divorce

Though deciding to divorce is emotional, you can prepare yourself for the road ahead by carrying out the 7 steps on this list.

Spouses splitting up is rarely a happy experience. Still, people that are about to undergo this legal process can make things easy on themselves by taking some preliminary steps like educating themselves, figuring out logistics, speaking with an experienced divorce attorney, and more. Here are seven steps to take immediately after deciding you want a divorce.

Accept Your Decision

Sadness, regret, and other negative emotions often follow the decision to get a divorce. If this happens to you, you must do your best to forgive yourself and accept your choice. Doing so can be tough, but remember how difficult marriages are. Try not to blame yourself or anyone else.

Obtain a Foundation of Knowledge

If you have no prior knowledge of divorce law, your next move will be educating yourself. That could include reading legal articles, browsing divorce blogs, and maybe purchasing some books. Doing so will give you a foundation of understanding that you can utilize throughout the divorce process. Your lawyer will pick up the slack eventually, but knowing critical information on your own is both useful and empowering.

Straighten Out Your Priorities

The overarching goal of divorce is to reasonably split up everything you share with your spouse. Still, you and your lawyer will prioritize some terms over others. One good thing to think about before the process begins is what you want the most. That answer could include your home, financial accounts, custody, or any other crucial matter.

Figure Out Logistics

You will figure out long-term logistics in the divorce proceedings, but you need a short-term plan too. What you need to decide on are matters like where you will live, where your children will live, and how often your kids will see each spouse.

Collect Financial Documents

As we mentioned above, going through a divorce is essentially splitting up everything you and your spouse own. One of the most important aspects of that process is your finances. You’ll want to collect documents like tax returns, pay stubs, and mortgages so that you have your own records of all the things you share.

Plan a Time to Talk to Your Family

You’ll need to inform your family about your plans before proceeding. First, break the news to your spouse. Once you do, you can collaborate on a strategy to tell your children. Both of those conversations will be difficult, but necessary. Make sure you prepare accordingly.

Find the Right Lawyer

At this point, the official divorce process is about to begin. Now it is time to hire an experienced lawyer and move forward with your case.

A couple generally doesn’t go into a marriage planning to divorce, but it is sometimes their only option. Though making this decision is emotional, you can prepare yourself for the road ahead by carrying out the 7 steps on this list.

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