Divorce is a financial, emotional, and mental roller coaster. With the right Michigan divorce attorney by your side, however, you can deal with the ups and downs along the way. It helps to know what your attorney will expect of you, and what you can expect from the divorce process.
1. Be transparent.
At least, be transparent with your Michigan divorce attorney. The last thing you should attempt to do while in the throes of divorce is hide assets or information vital to your divorce proceedings. Concealing assets is a legal issue that could lead to penalties, not to mention you’ll lose credibility in court when trying to prove your merit when it comes to, say, parenting time.
Ultimately, any asset search will uncover what you’re trying to keep under wraps anyway. Deception isn’t worth the effort – declare all your assets at the start.
2. Don’t let emotions influence your money decisions.
You may have comingled all your assets during marriage, but divorce is no time to be sentimental, or vindictive. You may want to “punish” your ex by saddling them with the house or haggling over a few hundred dollars. Acting out of spite might make you feel better for a day, but demanding that your attorney fight for, say, a piece of furniture that you don’t even really want may end up costing you more in attorney fees than the item itself is worth.
The nature of divorce often puts people on shaky financial ground – don’t end up in the hole before you even begin your new life just because you’re trying to “win.”
3. Get all your ducks in a row.
For most people, divorce can feel like a part-time job. The demand for information can be so overwhelming, along with managing the new daily life you’re dealing with, that some people hire organizational help. Do yourself a favor before you file and before you meet with your Michigan divorce attorney and take the time to pull together as much paperwork and evidence as possible, especially if you plan to file first for divorce.
4. There is no such thing as too many questions.
It is important to choose the right Michigan divorce attorney to handle your divorce case. Interviewing a handful of divorce lawyers not only gives you the opportunity to see who you gel with best and who understands your goals for the present and future, you can also take advantage of free legal advice.
Most attorneys offer free consultations that will provide you with basic information to get you started on your divorce journey. You may be able to gather so much information from meeting with different attorneys that you feel justified in skipping the attorney element entirely and deal with your divorce yourself. A DIY divorce will automatically put you in the losing column.
Advocating for yourself can feel like a power trip at first, but it will only damage you in the long run. The outcome of your divorce depends largely on the quality of legal advice you are getting – if you’re attempting to do it on your own, you’re already at a disadvantage.
5. You must think about the future.
It is easy to get caught up in the day-to-day stress of divorce proceedings. However, it’s essential to think about the long-term. How will the decisions you make now affect next year’s taxes? How will your divorce impact your retirement? What will happen to your custody arrangement if you choose to move out of Michigan after your divorce?