04 May Top 5 Mistakes Made During Divorce
Getting divorced is an emotional process. Whether you have been with your spouse for twenty months or twenty years, it is not something to be taken lightly.
Every divorce case is different. Sometimes you can mediate and never need to step inside a courtroom. Other times, there is serious conflict, and a judge needs to step in. Contested or uncontested, children or not, when getting divorced, you want to be cautious during the process.
There are many mistakes that people make in the midst of getting divorced. Let’s dive into the top 5 to make sure you are not doing any of them.
Paperwork is everything. If you are served divorce papers, read carefully what your spouse’s demands are. When you get the final divorce decree, be sure that everything is outlined. When it comes to turning over assets, make sure everything you have is written. When you are writing your parenting plan, be sure to read everything over. Reading paperwork keeps you aware of what is going on and ensures you don’t miss anything crucial. Here is where an attorney can help. Part of their job is to read paperwork carefully and make sure they relay all information to you. Regardless, you should make sure you read everything yourself as well.
When it comes to any legal process there is usually a timeframe that you need to keep in mind. If you are the person that is served divorce papers, you have 20-28 days to respond. Not responding can lead to your spouse getting a default divorce and you will not be able to file any demands you have.
This is another instance where having an attorney can help. They will keep track of deadlines for you and be sure to file everything in a timely manner on your behalf.
Every document matters. This is true whether it is your divorce filing, paperwork regarding your assets, or the final divorce decree. Any settlement paperwork, your parenting plan, everything else should be kept. Be sure to make copies and store everything in a safe space. You may have to refer back to it years down the line. If you run into any issues with custody or child support, having those documents is critical. If you want to get remarried, you’ll need to prove you are divorced. Even if the paperwork is filed with the courts, you should always have a copy yourself.
Many people might think that everyone has the right to an attorney. This is unfortunately true only in criminal cases. The well-known line, “If you don’t have a lawyer, one will be assigned to you,” does not apply in family court.
You can go into a divorce and represent yourself. The cost of a lawyer might seem intimidating. In the long run, it will help protect your rights and your family. Lawyers will advocate and negotiate on your behalf. You won’t get taken advantage of by your spouse that has an attorney. And if the divorce proceedings get intense, your attorney will step up to the plate. Plus, they will make sure that nothing gets missed.
When you do hire an attorney, it is important to be honest with them. Disclose all your assets. Whether it is separate or community property, they need to know everything. Be honest with them about what you want out of the divorce as well. Your attorney will not be able to read your mind if you don’t tell them. Being candid allows them to know what to negotiate for.
Throughout the divorce process, be sure to tread carefully. Recognize that your actions are being noted and if there is a custody battle, you don’t want to misstep. Hire an attorney who can help not only fight for what you want from the divorce but advise you throughout the process. Navarette Bowen P.C. has a team of experienced divorce lawyers that can help you through this. If you are located in Denton or the surrounding area, contact us today to set up a consultation.