Initially, some couples consider entering their own negotiations toward a settlement. Hoping to streamline the process and avoid litigation or attorney’s fees, couples assume they know their own situation well enough to divvy things up and move on
Overall, the goal should be to consider your immediate situation, and plan for the future. The parties should focus on past, present, and future financial data as well as custody arrangements when applicable. Unfortunately, there are dozens of factors that may impede the desired outcome. More often than not, these subjects tend to ignite passions which can lead to messy disputes.
Hiring an attorney can streamline all of the factors that must be addressed prior to settling your divorce. Hiring a Divorce attorney with experience in property division, equitable distribution, and support will help avoid the following hurdles and ensure the results are as fair and comprehensive as possible.
Of course, emotions are running high in divorce. Children and money can be volatile subjects during this time. Rehashing old fights over spending habits, purchases or undisclosed income can break down the communication needed to make decisions. Where children are involved, deciding custody and education can be daunting.
Before writing off formal representation, consider the nature of your interactions at the moment and in the past. If the topics of money, honesty, and decision making were difficult before, it is sure to be a tough road in negotiating a divorce settlement. A divorce attorney will efficiently communicate to reach a goal without the emotional element.
If you feel you can communicate effectively, what’s important to consider is the meaning of compromise. Compromise is defined by the act of mutually conceding in the effort to settle a dispute. That means both of you must be willing to drop or relent on certain issues. When met with resistance, your attorney can fight for those issues you do not want to drop or ignore. An experienced divorce attorney can show you other options or possibilities that may mitigate frustrations.
Your financial future may be dependent upon how you divide assets and debts. Be prepared with questions on any hidden assets, future returns or bonuses you may not be aware of. Are you more concerned with selling the marital home than your spouse’s 401K? Establish which items, if any, you both want to resolve most. Having an outline will guide the conversation; however, you may find your priorities are at odds.
Your divorce attorney can analyze your unique situation and focus time, energy and costs where you will benefit most.
There is some risk in trusting your ex during this phase if you suspect hidden income or unknown liabilities. There are venues to pursue this information on your own – soliciting loan applications from the Court, calling an employer, etc. Procuring evidential documents of spending or earning can be tough and time consuming, but ignorance is not bliss in this context. Your attorney can collect and analyze all of the information needed to fully understand the status of your marital estate.
Knowing you have thoroughly dissected all financials will give you peace of mind on the other side, in your new single life. Eliminating unknowns is important when everything seems to be changing.
In Pennsylvania, the focus is on the word equitable. Understanding how this applies to your divorce can be difficult to handle independently. Hiring a divorce attorney with experience in equitable distribution can virtually eliminate any emotional barriers to constructively building an agreement.
If you live in Bucks County, Montgomery County, or Philadelphia, choose The Law Offices of Michael Kuldiner, P.C. to handle your divorce. Over 80% of our practice is dedicated to matters of family law; let our experience and expertise do the work. To meet with an attorney, contact our office to schedule a consultation, (215) 942-2100.