Tag Archives: divorce preparation

5 Steps to Take Before Filing for Divorce

DuPage County divorce attorney credit scoreWhether you and your spouse have discussed the possible end of your marriage in detail or you are silently debating your options, once divorce becomes inevitable, there are several steps you need to take to protect your interests during the divorce process. Before filing, set yourself up for success with these tips:

1. Begin Building Your Credit

Spouses often discover post-divorce that they have built up their spouse’s credit while neglecting their own. Without a good credit score, down payments for utilities and housing are often significantly higher, if you are able to get approved in the first place. Open a credit card now and use it to make small purchases that you can pay off each month. The goal is not to create a pile of debt; it is to prepare yourself for future success.

2. Understand the Family Finances

For property division and support payments, it is imperative to understand what you own and what you owe. Gather important documents like your credit report, paycheck stubs, tax returns, and bank statements. This information will not only help a judge determine whether you are eligible for spousal maintenance to cover your family’s financial needs, but it will also assist you in creating a post-divorce budget.

3. Prevent Revenge Spending

If at all possible, pay off and close any joint credit card accounts and open separate bank accounts. Inform creditors of the divorce. If you cannot pay off a card or loan, negotiate a deal to reduce the amount owed while you work to close the account. If neither of these is an option, freeze all accounts to prevent further usage.

4. Remember: You are Not Single Yet

Avoid partying, dating, or staying up until the wee hours of the morning, especially if kids are involved. As always, your children should be your first priority. Remember that divorce is stressful for them, too. How you conduct yourself during your case can affect the decisions made about child custody. If you have a romantic interest, it is often best to wait to pursue that relationship until after the divorce is final.

5. Contact a Divorce Lawyer

Do-it-yourself divorces never end up as quick and easy as they may seem, nor do they save money in the long run. Many of these cases result in long courtroom battles and repeated post-divorce modifications. Our suggestion is to speak to a proven DuPage County divorce attorney. At Andrew Cores Family Law Group, we can help you understand whether you may be able to use methods of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) such as mediation. This may help you reach a shorter and more amicable solution than a divorce through litigation, and it can empower you and your spouse to create your own divorce agreement. However, this avenue sometimes fails, and litigation in court becomes necessary.

Since 1996, our attorneys have been helping clients reach the outcome they need in both ADR and divorce litigation. We can help you understand your rights and requirements during divorce and work with you to reach a positive resolution to your case. Call our office today at 630-871-1002 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.




How to Be the Best Divorce Client

divorce client, DuPage County divorce lawyer, going through divorce, important court documents, divorce process, divorce preparationA legal proceeding like divorce is a team effort. It requires lawyers, paralegals, clerks, and legal secretaries to work together to all help reach the best outcome, and one of the key members of the legal team is the client themselves. Naturally, this can be a bit of a difficult adjustment for the client, since data from the United States Census indicates that the overwhelming majority of people going through divorce have never done it before.

Fortunately, this post highlights a few strategies that people can use to be more effective divorce clients like staying organized, taking an active role in the process, and keeping a level head. Divorce clients using these strategies can streamline and speed up the divorce process, which often means keeping their legal fees lower.

Stay Organized 

Organization can be a big help to moving the case forward quickly and effectively. While the attorney should also be tracking important court documents and filings, there are going to be certain things, like tax returns, that the divorce client is going to have to provide. Making sure these are readily available can ensure a speedier process.

Preparation is also a key part of organization. Coming to every meeting with the attorney with a list of questions and an agenda can help move the meeting forward, and it can ensure that the meetings cover everything concerned by the client. This can help prevent unnecessary follow-up emails with extra questions that do nothing but increase the cost of the divorce. Similarly, a client’s preparing a written list of goals at the start of the divorce can be helpful. This can allow the client to keep his or her eye on the ball, and it can make it easier to track the progress being made, which is an important morale booster.

Take an Active Role

Another important thing divorce clients can do is take an active role in their own divorce. By asking questions and making sure that they understand what is going on, they can become a bigger asset to the legal team. This includes volunteering documents and information that may be helpful, and making sure that the attorney’s understanding of the facts of the situation is as accurate as it can possibly be. This can help prevent unwanted surprises in the process.

Keep a Level Head 

The final piece of advice, and the one that can be the most difficult for some people, is to maintain a level head throughout the process. Divorces can be emotionally charged, and they can reopen old wounds. However, the more the two sides stay calm and approach things with reasonable goals, the faster, easier, and cheaper the divorce will be in the long run.

Whether you have already made the decision to file for divorce or you are still just thinking about it, contact a DuPage County divorce lawyer. An experienced legal professional can help answer any questions you may have, and can help you start moving in the right direction.