Are You Getting a Divorce? Here are 4 Steps to a Smooth Start
Divorcing is never easy. Beginning a new life on your own can prove to be daunting, but it is better than living in a failed relationship. You’ll need a well thought-out plan that will help you move forward quickly. And what better way to move on from a divorce than with a mediation that finds mutually beneficial solutions to difficult decisions in a civil and peaceful environment.
With Mr. Leta facilitating your meditation, you and your spouse take control of planning your own separate lives and make decisions that move you to a better and brighter future. It is especially important for parents, who though separating, will need to continue working together and make joint decisions for their children. A productive mediation will help reduce stressful legal procedures in court and save you time and money in terms of a lengthy court hearing and attorney fees. Mediation is quicker and much cheaper than a standard contested divorce.
Here are four steps that will help you prepare for a smoother start divorce:
- Agree to talk, agree to be fair, agree to mediate your divorce
Sometimes it’s not easy to agree on the division of your property, parenting responsibilities, or spousal support while breaking a marriage. However, for the sake of a successful divorce and your children, both of you should agree to talk, be fair, and to mediate. It doesn’t mean that you must be happy about this situation, but you should be civil and informed. Mr. Leta recommends couples should look after their interests and be respectful and open to their spouse's interests. When one shows, they are interested in their spouse's concerns and needs as much as their own, agreement and compromise can be easily attained. Everyone one at the table will feel validated and understood. Nonetheless, both of you should be willing to be present and have a serious open dialog.
- Create a master list
Once both of you have agreed to come to the table and talk, you have to organize yourself by making a list of what you own and what is owed. Start by making a list of all the possessions you and your spouse have. List everything!
The list should include your house and other real property, personal property such as jewelry and furniture, vehicles, all bank accounts, and other financial accounts. Don’t forget to include your ongoing liabilities and recurring expenses so that things such as mortgage loans, auto loans, utilities, students’ loans, debit card payments, and health insurance costs are known.
It is important that you provide a complete and honest accounting of all your assets and liabilities, to ensure that the divorce process goes smoothly.
- Decide what you need
Next, you’ll both have to determine what’s necessary to live and what you can live without. It may seem easy, but this can prove to be a daunting process. Just like any other negotiated agreement, you’ll both have to come to terms that you may not get everything you hoped. So you will have to determine your range of suitable terms and make goals out of this.
More importantly, draft your current budget and how it will be after the divorce. This projection will give you a glimpse of your financial status now and what you will need henceforth.
- Make your children a priority
Even though you are dissolving your marriage, your role as a parent will continue. If not handled properly, your children could suffer because of the divorce. So agree to sit down and talk to them about what is happening. For the sake of the kids, you and your spouse should present a more unified position when dealing with the issue and answer their questions. Help them understand you will continue to love and support them always. Reassure them you will always be available, and they now have two homes, not just one. By addressing your children's doubts and fears, you will help your kids cope with the situation and can reduce the negative impact that divorce has on children.
Alert school teachers and counselors about the pending divorce, so these professionals will be better able to assist your children through these changes.
All decisions made during the divorce process should be in the best interest of your kids. So, before making any decision, think about how it will affect your children. Ensure that you also keep the parental decisions separate from the financial decisions, and don’t use it to influence your position on your spouse during the mediation.
When you marry, you never imagine that you may one day be divorced. So even with mediation, divorce is a heart-breaking and painful process. But if you use the above tips, your divorce process can have a smooth start.
Good luck on your future endeavors!