Let’s be honest: divorce is hard. It’s a monstrous life change that can be emotionally, mentally, and physically taxing. Navigating the New York Unified Court System is daunting, and the divorce process can be confusing. Learning how to rebuild your life as a single person, in addition to familiarizing yourself with the legal system, can be stressful and overwhelming. Is it really possible to have an easier divorce?
Maintaining an amicable relationship with your soon-to-be ex-spouse is easier said than done, however, it can make a world of difference during your divorce. Making a conscious effort to work with your spouse instead of working against them can help you reach a settlement faster, keeping you out of the court room. Not only will you avoid the stress of litigation, but this winning divorce strategy will even result in lower legal fees.
If your divorce involves child custody and support issues, remaining friendly with your ex is even more important. Learning how to successfully co-parent can make the transition into post-divorce life easier. It is hard to predict exactly how a child will react to their parent’s separation, but they will benefit if their parents take steps to build a friendly, flexible, and supportive relationship with each other. Practicing effective co-parenting can help to alleviate stress and anxiety for you and your child.
Plan Ahead to Squash Stress
The divorce process can be uncertain. A simple, uncontested case can turn into a contested matter at the drop of a dime. One disagreement over equitable distribution, support, or custody can open the door to more discord between parties. Creating a plan of action for handling such situations may help to soften the blow and reduce stress.
Determining which course of action to take will depend on the kind of conflict that arises. For instance, is your ex refusing to give up parenting time over Christmas? Instead of refusing, how about suggesting splitting time spent with the child? A common agreement for co-parenting during the holiday season involves the child spending time with one parent on Christmas Eve, and then Christmas Day with the other.
It can be harder to plan ahead when it comes to equitable distribution or matters involving the marital residence. Many couples will squabble over how to divide property, forcing them to work out settlements addressing intangible assets, such as bank accounts, and tangible assets, like a home, vehicle, or piece of artwork. To prepare for this kind of battle, it is recommended you make list of assets, and mentally prepare yourself for the possibility of losing a certain piece of property. Being faced with the possibility of losing an item with sentimental or monetary value is tough. Allowing yourself to realize that you may not be awarded everything you want will help to soften the blow if, or when, the time comes.
Gather Documents and Evidence
One of the most stressful and time consuming parts of divorce is known as the discovery phase. During discovery, each party will produce financial records, documents detailing any debt, health insurance or life insurance information, and mental and physical health records (just to name a few).
Gathering information of this multitude can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. After filing for divorce, your lawyer should provide you with an Assets and Liabilities Checklist. This checklist will allow you to keep an inventory of which documents you have in your possession, and which records you still need to obtain. Your lawyer will be able to serve a Subpoena Duces Tecum upon any agency or institution you are unable to obtain documents from.
It is recommended that you start compiling documents before the initial discovery phase begins, so you will not feel rushed or overwhelmed trying to obtain and organize years’ worth of information at once. By spending a little bit of time each day, or week, working on the task at hand, you will be able to accomplish it at a much more relaxed pace.
Trust Your Lawyer
You hired your attorney because of their experience, candor, and reputation. Matrimonial and family law attorneys specialize in sensitive divorce and child custody cases, and are well versed in the rules and guidelines associated with this particular field of law. In short, they are the experts. Your lawyer, or team of attorneys, are more familiar with divorce and custody than you are. Trust them to handle your case with the utmost care and dedication.
Previously, we have discussed the benefit of having a strong attorney-client relationship, and how to build one with your chosen representation. A cornerstone of this professional relationship is trust. Your lawyer will trust you to be honest and open with them, and in turn, they expect you to trust that they have your best interest in mind. Lawyers are bound by a certain code of legal ethics, and will not purposefully mishandle your case or misrepresent you throughout the duration of your action.
New York City’s Divorce Team
A surefire way to make your divorce less stressful is to hire an experienced and dedicated team of attorneys to take this journey with you. The family law firm of Brian D. Perskin & Associates P.C. is comprised of a team of divorce experts, each utilizing their own specialized skills to represent litigants throughout the New York City area. From the first meeting, all the way through the discovery process, negotiation, litigation, and settlement, you can rest assured that you delicate matter is being handled by the best. For more information, or to schedule a free consultation, contact the team today!