More Divorces Filed in January Than Any Other Time of Year
January is the month of cold temperatures, and giving the cold shoulder. The first month of the year is reportedly the most popular time for couples to file for divorce, most likely triggered by the hectic holiday spending, traveling, and more. The Legal Services Commission even went so far as to claim that the first Monday after the kids return to school sees the most filings of any other time of year.
If you’ve fallen victim to “Divorce Month,” consider these 5 tips for filing to help your family, your spouse, and yourself prepare.
1. Prepare for mediation. In mediation, it’s necessary to put all your issues on the table, and the best way to come to an agreement on your separation is to enter into mediation in good faith. Commit to participation, without strong-arming each other.
2. Organize Your Assets. As your lawyer, it’s our job at Schulz Stephenson Law to help you understand what to do with what you have. You’ll want to make a list of all of your assets and possessions. Include all real estate property, personal property, vehicles, bank accounts, credit cards, retirement accounts, life insurance policies, annuities, stocks, and any other financial assets.
3. Know Your Income Sources. Crack open your files and gather your paystubs, self-employment profit and loss statements, social security, and more. We should know your recurring expenses and long term liabilities, including mortgage payments, car loans, health insurance costs, utilities, rent, student loans, credit card payments.
4. Set Your Goals. Once you’ve gathered all of your information, you should enter into mediation knowing what you want, and what you’re willing to negotiate. Don’t be afraid to take considerable time to decide what is the most important to you and what you can live without.
5. Know What is Best For Your Family. When it comes to your family, remember to keep the parental access decisions completely separate from any financial decisions. In the heat of mediation, it’s easy to use custody or visitation wants in exchange for financial wants, but that may not be in the best interest of the child.
Whether you’re filing during “Divorce Month” or another time during the year, our team of lawyers are here to help. At Schulz Stephenson Law we understand this is never an enjoyable or easy decision but we will help guide you through the process while making the best decisions for you and your family. Contact Schulz Stephenson Law today if you’re thinking of separating or filing for divorce and need legal assistance.