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What to do before filing for divorce

The decision to divorce may come after years of debating, or it may be a fairly quick choice after a devastating incident such as infidelity. No matter how a person reaches this decision, there are steps that are important to take before actually filing the paperwork.

First, find a good lawyer. By good lawyer we mean someone who is experienced with Florida family law and someone who you think is a good fit. You may find this person by researching online or perhaps even getting a reference from a friend or family member. This individual can guide you through the process and help you reach the best outcome. And if you forget the other important pre-divorce steps listed in this blog post, your lawyer can keep you on track.

Next, make sure you separate your finances. It may seem like a drastic move, but you want to make sure that you have your own finances to rely on during the divorce process. This means you may want to take half of the money that is in your joint account and open an account only in your name. This can be critical to do before divorce because once a person files paperwork, a judge may halt any further money transfers.

Finally, get your ducks in a row. Collect any important financial documents such as bank and credit card statements and documents related to taxes or a mortgage. Also, be ready to identify (as well as prove) what assets belong to you. This may include anything that was yours before the marriage, as well as heirlooms and gifts you received.

Taking the time to prepare for divorce can not only make the process go smoother, but can help a divorcee avoid added stress.

Source:, “How to Perfectly Plan Your Divorce to Protect Your Assets,” Amanda Garcia, Jan. 8, 2014

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