The decision of leaving a loved one is a very difficult decision to make. This decision should not be made impetuously, and the action of actually telling your spouse it is time to separate should not be delivered to them without planning it out first. Your approach to telling them good- bye has a huge impact on how the rest of the separation will play out. Children and custody, family, friends, finances, child support agreements and the settlement agreement are all linked to separating from your spouse. To start, you should consult a Raleigh Divorce Attorney to help with your Raleigh separation agreement. Here are 10 helpful tips to get you through your separation in the state of North Carolina.
- Prepare to Leave
Take time to think about what it is that you need in order to be able to carry on with your everyday activities. If you plan on moving out, or if you intend to have your spouse move out, think of a realistic timeline of when it can actually happen so that it doesn’t disrupt all areas of your life as well as your spouse’s. Consider your spouse’s career and how this change will affect their work. The change will be difficult but there is no reason to put ones job on the line if it can be avoided. Look for Raleigh Divorce lawyer to help you with your separation and meet with them for advice on how you should handle your specific situation. Many of them will meet with you at no cost, so you don’t have to worry about your spouse getting suspicious when viewing bank statements. Come up with a reasonable budget for what will be needed to cover the additional living expenses when the move happens and then find a place to move that fits that budget. If you have children, consider which parent is more capable of caring for them. If you have a job that requires a lot of travel and you work 80 hours a week, while your spouse has little travel and works only 40 hours a week, as hard as it is to leave your children it may be best for them to remain living with the parent that has more time to care for them.
- Your Parting Words
The way you communicate to your loved one that you want to separate can have a huge impact on the rest of your separation. Telling your spouse that you want to separate while in the middle of an argument is not a good way to break the news and neither is calling them on the phone to tell them that you’re leaving. A quiet, calm, face-to-face meeting is ideal, but may not be realistic in some situations. You don’t want your words to come off as a threat or seem like you’re trying to be hurtful. State your feelings, own your part in the breakdown of the relationship, explain how both of you will be better off with the change and communicate your plan of how to move forward with the separation. Also, if you have children, address the importance of meeting with them together to tell them of your plans to separate.
- Be Truthful
Be truthful to yourself, be truthful to your Raleigh Divorce lawyer, and be truthful to your spouse. If you are not honest with yourself, how are you to be honest with other people? You need to be honest with your lawyer so that they can help you come to a fair and reasonable settlement. It is important to be honest with your spouse so that they do not feel as though you are being secretive and hiding things from them. Answer your spouse’s questions truthfully. You don’t have to give them long detailed answers, but be as truthful and honest with them as you can. This will help keep the potential storm calm.
- Don’t Say too Much
If you know that Raleigh Divorce attorneys will be involved, do not tell your spouse of the assets that you intend to get out of the separation. That is something that should be discussed with the lawyers and then they can negotiate which assets go to which party. By stating the items that you want, your spouse can use that as leverage later on.
Time is an important factor when trying to come to a resolution that works for both parties. It may take some time for the other party to accept that the separation is going to happen, but if they are in denial they are not ready to face any important decisions.
- Be Considerate of Your Children
If you have children, consider their needs. This does not mean tough out your marriage. It means, consider the effects of the separation and how it will affect to your children. Communication with your children is extremely important. Explain to them that they are not being abandoned by either parent and that they did not cause the separation. If you leave without talking with your children, or expect your spouse too, it is likely your children will feel abandoned. This will make it difficult for you to co-parent with your spouse and your children may fee estranged.
- Settlement is Preferable
Mediation is preferable in just about every case, including uncontested Raleigh divorces for several reasons. In most separations, settlements end up being less costly, they take up less time, and it’s usually less stress and emotional strain than going through litigation. The emotional strain of court is felt, by each spouse, children, family members, friends and co-workers.
- Do your Research
It is important to understand the laws in your state before you separate that way you will have an understanding of the process and you will have realistic expectations. In North Carolina occurs when the husband and wife officially live in separate residences, with the intention of living apart from one another. Then a divorce can be obtained after the married couple have lived in separate residences for one year and one day. During the year of separation, couples typically consult Raleigh Divorce lawyers to draw up separation agreements and property settlement papers. The agreements outline how property and assets are to be divided, child custody, alimony and child support. In North Carolina, unlike other states, all four of these issues can be settled between the husband and wife privately. If the husband and wife cannot come to a private agreement, a judge can decide for them after either spouse proceeds with litigation.
In order to be prepared for negotiations inform yourself, as much as you can, about:
- What your needs and wants are
- What your spouse’s needs and wants are
- What the laws are in your State – What do they say each of you are entitled to?
- What your household income and expenses currently and what your income and expenses will be when you have separated.
- Required Information
You should consider gathering copies of documents and records before you separate because it may become difficult to get them after the divorce process begins. By gathering the documents ahead of time, you will be ahead of the game in case your spouse tries to make things difficult by hiding the materials or not turning copies of them over to your attorney right away. It’s better to be proactive than reactive in this situation. Here is a list of items that you should look for:
- Birth certificates
- Social Security cards
- Separation agreements, pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements and/or other agreements between you and your spouse
- Federal and state income tax returns for the last three to five years
- Bank checking and savings account statements
- Pension or retirement plan, annuities, individual retirement account (IRA) documents
- Insurance policies including life, health, automobile and homeowners insurance
- Payroll statements and bonus records
- Real estate deeds, contracts or leases
- Debts owed by you and your spouse – mortgages, loans, credit card statements
Your Raleigh lawyer will need copies of these documents, getting them prior to separating is helpful and helps save time and money.
Choosing a lawyer in the Raleigh area to represent you in your divorce is a difficult decision. Typically there isn’t much time to spend on selecting a Raleigh lawyer, but here are some pointers to help you select the Raleigh attorney that is right for you.
- Find a Raleigh Divorce Attorney that is realistic and not just telling you what you want to hear
- Communication is key- you want a Raleigh lawyer (as well as their team) to answer your questions in a timely manner.
- Find an attorney in Raleigh hat is will go over their fees and costs with you. Ask them their hourly rate, as well as ask for scenarios that could make the expenses go up and down. They should be able to give you an estimate for how much they believe your divorce will cost.
If you are considering separation from your spouse in Raleigh, North Carolina, contact The Law Corner at 919-424-8319. The attorneys at The Law Corner specialized in divorce and Raleigh family law, and they’re here to help you through the separation and divorce process. You can expect the team at The Law Corner to work hard to make your divorce as simple and stress-free as possible. In the meantime, take advantage of the many Raleigh Divorce resources made available to you.