Divorce Prevention - and When You Need a Divorce Attorney
What can you do to reduce the odds of divorce? What steps can you take to try to keep the marriage together? And when do you need a divorce attorney?
- Marrying after the age of 20 reduces the risk of divorce for the young couple. Waiting until age 25 reduces the odds even further, especially if you haven't had a lot of sexual partners prior to marriage.
- Enjoy a long courtship; this involves waiting at least a year before you get married. Taking time to get to know one another helps each side determine if the other side is a match. It is better to break up with a boyfriend or girlfriend than it is to get divorced later.
- Never get involved with someone who is currently married to someone else. Use caution when getting involved with someone who has a child by someone else. Marriages with step-children are more likely to end in divorce than first marriages without unrelated minor children.
- If you are faced with marital strife, never have a baby in the hope that it will make everything better. This is more likely to drive someone away than turn a fighting couple into a loving family.
Tips for the Breakup
- Always consult with divorce attorneys before you transfer any assets. Do not sign quit claim deeds, give property to family members or sign any ownership paperwork without professional legal advice. In the best case scenario, you have moved assets to the other spouse’s name and must account for this in the divorce filing. In the worst case scenario, you’ve given up your rights to assets such as the family home or cars while remaining liable for the debt.
- Always get your own legal counsel when facing separation or divorce. Spouses should never use the same divorce attorneys.
- Make your own copies of all legal documents. Make copies of credit card statements, prenuptial contracts, car titles and deeds. You will need proof of ownership to ensure that the full value of the assets are listed in the divorce filing and to show proof of ownership in case your spouse attempts to sell them prior to the divorce. Copies of all debts such as mortgage payments, utilities and credit card statements are used to show the current financial state of the household and can be used as evidence in case the other spouse attempts to run up debt in your name prior to the divorce.
- Always seek the advice of a divorce attorney when someone files for separation. While this may not result in divorce, separation affects your taxes and living arrangements. It can also generate alimony and child support orders, areas in which divorce attorneys have significant experience.
When Do You Need a Divorce Attorney?
- You need a divorce attorney the moment the other spouse says that he or she wants out. It is rare for a spouse to say this without having thought of leaving for a long time. When someone says they want to end the relationship, you need a divorce attorney immediately to secure your rights to your children, your home and your assets.
- Has your spouse accused you of sexually abusing the children? Unfortunately, this tactic is used by the wife to force the man out of the home, denying him access to critical documentation or the children. Whether your spouse says she wants a divorce or not, you should consult with a divorce attorney the moment the accusations are made. The divorce attorney can help you gain access to critical legal papers such as deeds and bank statements, arrange visitation with the children, and start gathering evidence that can prove your innocence against the sexual abuse charges. While levying sexual abuse charges forces the father out of the house and gives her temporary, full custody of the children, it also affects the man's ability to retain a security clearance, get another job and even land an innocent man in jail.
- Has your spouse said he or she “needs space”? This statement may be a sign of growing emotional distance or the first step toward an actual divorce. If the spouse has asked for space and asked to go on a long trip or move out, seek legal counsel. An attorney may be able to find evidence of an affair that strengthens your rights during a divorce.