(1) Gather important documents.
Begin to collect bank records, retirement account information, tax returns, and other important financial information. This information will be important as the divorce proceeds.
(2) Evaluate personal property.
If you are thinking about a divorce, start thinking about what personal property (books, furniture, etc.) you and your spouse have. If there is anything in particular you want to keep in your possession, make note of that. Take photographs or video footage of valuable personal property and collections.
(3) Keep finances separate.
As much as possible, try to keep your finances separate. If you feel that your marriage is coming to an end, keeping your finances separate can make the division process easier.
(4) Track inheritance.
If you inherit money or property, keep that property separate from your spouse’s. For money, create a separate account and keep that money distinct from income and other money. In Oregon, if you are able to prove that the inheritance is separate from your spouse’s, you will be able to keep the inheritance without having to share it with your spouse.
(5) Keep children with you if possible.
If you are separating, keep the children living with you. In cases where custody is an issue, we are able to request a Status Quo Order, which keeps the living situation and parenting time the same as it had been for the three months before filing. If the children have been living with you, this will allow you to keep that the same. It also strengthens your case for custody. But, make sure to allow the other parent to continue to have parenting time, if that is best for the children.
(6) Try to work out the details.
If you and your spouse are able to decide on custody, division of property and other important details, we may be able to proceed with an uncontested divorce. This is a more time and cost effective way of dissolving your marriage. Trying to work out the details early can help the process in the long run.
(7) Contact us.
We offer complimentary phone consultations on domestic relations issues. If you feel that you may be filing for divorce or other domestic relations relief soon, give us a call. We can answer your questions and help you get ready for the process.