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How to Prepare for Divorce in Arizona

Steps to take when dissolving a marriage

Divorce isn’t something to rush into. Even if you’ve made up your mind to dissolve your marriage, there are steps you should take in advance that can make the process smoother for you. For help preparing for a divorce in Arizona, take advantage of a free initial consultation from Clark & Schloss Family Law, P.C. One of our experienced divorce attorneys can explain how to ready yourself emotionally, legally and financially.

Gathering support before divorce

Even an amicable divorce can take an emotional toll on the parties. You’re going through a transition that’s likely to change the trajectory of your life. For this reason, it’s good to form a support network before beginning the process. You need people you can confide in, such as:

  • An attorney — Do a thorough search for a divorce lawyer with the experience and skill to manage your case. Choose one who inspires confidence and in whom you feel comfortable confiding.
  • A financial advisor — Divorce can change your financial profile. Regardless of your age, you may have to adjust your investments and retirement plans to compensate for lost income and higher expenses. Speak to a financial advisor about your specific situation.
  • Friends and family — Let your loved ones know what you’re planning and ask for their support. Speaking to friends who have gone through a divorce can be especially helpful.

There are also “divorce care” groups that provide supportive environments where you can talk to people who understand what you’re going through. Hearing informed perspectives can alert you to pitfalls in the divorce process that you should avoid.

Ways to emotionally prepare for divorce

As your attorneys, we can advise you on steps you can take to fortify yourself emotionally for the stresses ahead. We also can help you decide whether divorce is your best option or whether legal separation might better suit your situation. No one gets everything they want in a divorce, so you have to be ready to compromise.

Financially preparing for divorce

In our practice, we serve clients in varying financial situations, from high-earning professionals to people who are largely dependent on their spouses’ incomes. In every situation, it’s best to gather as much information as possible about your assets and debts, whether jointly or individually held. These questions should be answered:

  • Does your spouse have hidden assets?
  • Are there jointly held debts you don’t know about?
  • How much is in your and your spouse’s retirement plans?
  • What is your income and what is your spouse’s income?
  • What is your credit rating?

If you have accounts, investments or insurance policies that list beneficiaries, you should consider how those designations might change after divorce.

After doing this research, you can put together a post-divorce budget for meeting your projected expenses. You should also factor in the cost of the divorce and whether you can afford a court fight or should aim for an uncontested divorce.

Getting organized for divorce in Arizona

To position your case for a favorable settlement of financial matters, you need to assemble documentation that should include:

  • Tax returns
  • Home deeds, vehicle titles and other ownership documentation
  • Bank and credit card statements
  • Retirement savings statements
  • Documentation related to your children, such as tuition bills and medical records
  • Life insurance policies

Practical steps you should take include:

  • Getting a private P.O. Box
  • Changing passwords on personal devices and social media accounts
  • Considering where will you live once you file for divorce

Your particular circumstances may make additional actions advisable. We can provide further direction once we analyze your case.

Contact a concerned Scottsdale divorce attorney for a free consultation

Clark & Schloss Family Law, P.C. provides reliable, cost-effective representation in Arizona divorce cases. Call 602-789-3497 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation. Our Scottsdale office is conveniently located on Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard.

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