As divorce attorneys, naturally, we’ve given
divorce advice to our close friends and family members. That being said, we’ve
had clients say to us before, “If you were giving advice to your
best friend or your brother or sister, what would you tell them to do?”
Assuming we were doling out our best divorce advice to a client or someone
who was close to us, here’s what we would say:
Don’t file for divorce unless you mean it.
Sometimes when couples argue, they’ll throw out the “divorce”
threat, but in reality, they don’t mean it. They’ll even file
divorce papers in hopes it will shock their spouse into changing for the
better. But still, they’re no ready to take that step, but they
do. Before they know it, they’ve reached the point of no return
and there’s no turning back. Don’t file for divorce unless
you’re certain you’re 100% ready. Otherwise, you could be
ending your relationship prematurely, and setting yourself up for a lot
of pain and disappointment.
Seek emotional support.
Even when the divorce is for the best, it has a way of making people an
emotional train wreck. In effect, they may say and do irrational things
that are completely out of character. Our advice is to see a counselor
or a therapist, or even a pastor, a bishop, or a priest (for those who
are religious). It’s very helpful to have a non-biased third-party
act as a sounding board.
Copy all of the financial documents early.
If you and your spouse are amicable at the outset, great. Take advantage
of this harmony and obtain copies of all of your financial information
and forward them to your divorce attorney asap. This way, if things take
a turn for the worse, critical financial documents won’t mysteriously
disappear, which happens unfortunately.
Do what’s best for the kids.
No matter how you feel about your spouse or the divorce, you need to be
mature and do what is in the best interests of the children. Maxing out
your spouse’s credit cards will only leave less money for the children
and damage your ex’s credit. Leaving the children with a babysitter
on your weekends so you can start dating is probably not the best plan
of action, especially if their emotions are raw because of the divorce.
Also, if your ex is a loving parent and the split is fresh, it’s
probably not the best time to move halfway across the country where your
children would barely see your ex.
Secure family heirlooms.
You may not think about it, but during a divorce people’s cherished
family heirlooms or valuables have a way of going missing. If you have
wedding photos, videos of your children growing up, or even digital images
of your family on the home computer, you may want to take steps to secure
those right away. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for these items
to disappear in the midst of a divorce.
Get educated on Pennsylvania’s divorce laws.
It’s NEVER a good idea to go into a divorce blindly. When people
do that, they unknowingly make poor choices. Often, these poor choices
cost them more time and money, or they negatively affect child custody.
In order to protect yourself, get educated on your rights and responsibilities
under Pennsylvania’s divorce laws. The best way to do that is to
speak with an experienced divorce attorney.
We hope you find this advice useful. If you are interested in obtaining
a no-fault Pennsylvania divorce for just $219, contact Cairns Law Offices today!