If you’re going through divorce proceedings, you need a team on your side, whether you’re filing for divorce or your spouse has filed a lawsuit against you. Having strong advocates and counselors with you every step of the way can help you get the information and guidance you need to make your divorce progress as smoothly as possible. When building your team, remember the following people:
1. AN EXPERIENCED FAMILY LAW LAWYER
One of the first people you need to contact when you’re going through a divorce is a lawyer. Your first call to a lawyer will usually be to set up a consultation, where you can tell your story, ask questions in a safe, non-judgmental setting, and learn more about the divorce process. Some consultations can even be completed over the phone.
Your attorney can help connect you with many of the other experts on this list, such as financial and mental health experts. However, when choosing a lawyer, you really need to be hard. You want to make sure your family law attorney has experience handling cases with similar needs. For example, if you are about to divorce a wealthy person, find a lawyer experienced in handling cases involving complex financial situations. If you have children, find a lawyer with a high success rate in child custody cases.
Every decision made in a divorce will have an impact, which your family law attorney can guide you to ensure your decision-making is as informed as possible. To learn more about how Brown, Goldstein & Levy practices family law, click here.
2. YOUR BANK AND INVESTMENT COMPANIES
Once you have made an appointment with a family law attorney, they will begin to explain the financial aspects of a divorce to you. Your attorney may recommend that you contact your bank and request that joint accounts with your spouse be frozen, especially if you suspect your ex-spouse may be withdrawing funds or even draining the bank account. Sometimes an ex-spouse may be involved in overspending just before or after they are involved in a divorce. You will need to explain to the bank that you are divorcing and want your joint credit card account(s) closed or frozen until further notice. In the case of joint bank or investment accounts, you can request that the account be frozen until both parties authorize a withdrawal. To preserve your credibility, it is a good idea to inform your ex-spouse of the frozen accounts to avoid any surprises.
3. A FINANCIAL ADVISOR
You may already have a financial advisor who works with you, as well as with your ex-spouse during the marriage. The major changes brought about by a divorce can change the way you plan your finances for the short and long term. If you don’t have a financial advisor, your attorney may suggest you contact a certified divorce financial analyst, who will have specialized experience working alongside attorneys through all stages of a divorce.
You may have investments, loans, and assets that you will need to budget for during your separation and after your divorce. During a divorce, your financial adviser will advise you on the financial consequences of decisions surrounding the division of property, and additional costs such as alimony and alimony. A financial advisor will ensure that you plan not only for the present, but also for the future once your separation is over. Financial planning is also key to adjusting to your new lifestyle once the divorce is finalized.
4. MENTAL HEALTH EXPERTS
The extent to which mental health experts are involved in a divorce depends greatly on the circumstances of the separation and the people involved. However, mental health professionals find themselves in divorces of all kinds, from collaborative divorces to high-conflict divorces. Sometimes lawyers can bring in mental health experts to increase their ability to help you to the greatest degree possible.
The services of a mental health professional may also be helpful for children of divorce. A family therapist can help your children adjust to their new lifestyle and come to terms with their parents’ divorce, especially if the separation is high-conflict. A family therapist can help your children adjust to the custody schedule, the stressors of the divorce process, their feelings about the divorce, and receive helpful tips for navigating their post-divorce lifestyle.
5. FRIENDS, FAMILY OR SUPPORT GROUPS
Last but not least, you may have a circle of trusted friends, family, or co-workers who can help you through your divorce. Your support system could be your safe space to express your feelings, be a shoulder to cry on, and can help you stay positive during the difficulties of a divorce. If they wish, your friends and family could also help you with some of the aftermath of a divorce, such as helping you watch your children, helping you move house, and spending time with you to remember that you are not only. Instead, you can choose to work through your divorce with people who are going through it themselves. A divorce support group near you can help you heal and develop strategies to get out of your divorce in the best way that works for you.
Divorce can be very overwhelming and complex. You need an experienced family law attorney who will make sure your voice is heard throughout the divorce process. Dana McKee is an award-winning family law attorney who has helped many clients through painful divorces and bitter custody battles. She believes that her role is not only to be her client’s advocate and legal advisor, but also to be part of her client’s support system; someone his clients can trust for honest and sound advice.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.