When a marriage isn’t working, people may take a break from each other, get separated or divorced. When a couple decide to call it quits, it did not happen suddenly. One or both parties would have been thinking about it for quite a while before saying anything. However, even before you say anything at all, there are certain things you first need to do before you act on your thoughts about a divorce. Let’s take a closer look at some of these things.
1. Talk To A Marriage Counsellor
You may feel that this is really the last thing you want to do. You’ve pretty much made up your mind that you want out. However, you need to give this a chance, even if you think there’s absolutely no hope in trying to save the marriage. Actually, it does not have to be about that at all. You could find out what went wrong.
You can also learn how to cope as well as how you can start your new life and move on. In fact, you can go on your own. If your spouse comes along, that’s fine, but you can go on your own as well. You can check the Ontario Association for Marriage and Family Therapy for help or you could ask some contacts for leads or just use the Internet.
2. Find A Lawyer
You should find a divorce lawyer and talk to him or her about your situation. Remember, all you’re doing is talking for now, so that you can get all the right information. Don’t act on anything yet and certainly don’t start divorce proceedings. Divorce is tricky at the best of times and in Ontario, it can get pretty complex and confusing. If you decide to take drastic action without knowing what the consequences are, it may affect the outcome of a divorce and it may not be favourable for you, so be careful.
3. Moving Out? Think Twice
You may have seen in movies and films how one partner decides to get out of the home as soon as the chance presents itself. This is not advisable until you speak to your lawyer first. They know the ropes and you don’t. Obviously, if your life is in danger, that’s different, but otherwise, if your safety is not threatened, talk to the lawyer first. If you walk out, you may lose custody of your children and even the matrimonial home. You may not be able to return home until a court has divided the property, which is a long process.
4. Safeguard Assets
Before you plan to move on your divorce, close or freeze a joint credit card and protect your credit rating. Block access to other joint accounts such as a home equity loan. Close any joint accounts and open a new account in your name.
5. See Your Kids Often
One thing the courts want to see as far as kids are concerned is stability. If you want to have custody of the kids, you need to show and prove that you want it and be willing to work with your spouse in order to do so. You must also be responsible for decisions, remain close to them and be responsible for them. That means going to the doctor with them or attending school appointments, for example.
Sometimes, when you’re separating from your spouse, the other may try to limit your time in order to gain an upper hand, for their own case. Be careful of this. A lawyer can help advise you on how to handle this, so make sure to get one ready.