Mistakes to Avoid When Getting a Divorce

Mistakes to Avoid When Getting a Divorce

July 19th, 2018 by McNeely | Stephenson

An Indiana divorce could be a complicated and emotional process, and there are things you can do to make the situation worse. They are completely avoidable. Divorcing couples need to think things through and not respond emotionally, two things that can be difficult for some people. You may be angry, upset and feel the life you planned for yourself is being robbed from you, but it doesn’t justify making these mistakes. DO NOT . . .

  • Use your child as a pawn: “Parental alienation” is an all-too-common problem for divorcing parents. Kids are used as pawns in the divorce battle and directly or indirectly asked to choose sides, which is a no-win situation for a child. Degrading your spouse or ex-spouse in front of your child is a bad idea. It can leave the child emotionally scarred, and it may backfire on you. Your child may end up resenting you, not the other parent, for the games you’re playing. Trying to limit your child’s time with the other parent without justification could also result in the judge giving you less, not more, time with your child.
  • Hide your assets: Some spouses, especially those who own businesses, may see the writing on the wall and know a divorce is coming. They hide their income and assets in the business or in bank accounts in the hope that less will be shared with their spouse. It’s usually a fool’s errand, because accountants are often used to review the value of a business and track where the money’s gone. You could be held in contempt by the judge, which could be a serious setback to your case.
  • Think the divorce will be a big pay day: In most circumstances couples walk away poorer, not wealthier, after a divorce. Don’t think a divorce will be the start of a life-long vacation. You may read about multimillion-dollar divorce settlements among the rich and famous, but unless you’re rich, don’t expect to walk away flush with cash.
  • Do things out of spite: Don’t destroy, hide or sell your spouse’s property or something he or she holds dear. A judge (and everyone else) will just see you as petty, bitter and childish, things that won’t be good when it comes to orders concerning things like child custody or maintenance.
  • Compare yourself to another: Just because your cousin got the house in his divorce doesn’t mean that will happen to you too. Each situation is unique. Your divorced cousin may also live in a different state with different laws.
  • Have your spouse served with divorce papers in a public, humiliating way: There’s no need to pile on or rub it in his or her face. The vast majority of divorce cases are resolved through settlement negotiations. A spouse who feels humiliated and disrespected may want to punish you in return by making the negotiation process like pulling teeth. Do you want a time-consuming, lengthy, expensive divorce? A good way to do that is trying to inflict as much pain as possible on your spouse, because two can play at that game.

When your marriage is breaking up, it’s very easy to become emotional and not think rationally. You need to step back, take a breath and think about the consequences before you say or do anything concerning your spouse or marriage. We understand this is a tough time for you, and we help people going through divorces in Indiana every day. We can help you, too.

If you’re considering getting a divorce and have questions about the law or process or have decided it’s the right thing for you and need legal representation, call us or contact McNeely Stephenson online today so we can discuss your situation confidentially during a consultation.