Essential Steps You Should Take Before Filing for Divorce

Filing for divorce is not just about submitting your complaint to the court. There are many issues involved, and you need to prepare well to handle them. Some of the issues include your future relationship with your spouse and children, finances, the stress involved, and matters to do with child support and custody among others. Below are four things that you need to do before you file for divorce.

Be sure that you want a divorce

The need to divorce may appear obvious, but the decision to be made is an emotive one. You should try to avoid making any decision regarding whether or not to divorce when you are very emotional. Before you forge ahead with the divorce, ensure that you have exhausted all possible attempts to reconcile and resolve the issues amicably.

Once you have issued divorce papers to your spouse, it may be difficult to make a U-turn, even if you have had a change of mind. Courts can allow a divorce even if it is only one spouse that wishes to have the marriage dissolved.

Talk to a family and divorce law lawyer

Before you make the decision to file for a divorce, it is important to talk to more than one lawyer. This is because you will ultimately want to work with a lawyer who understands your aim for filing the case and fits into your plan.

You should avoid lawyers who attempt to provide solutions even before listening to the details of your case. If your case appears to be lengthy or complicated, you should hire a lawyer who fully understands the details involved.

Figure out how you would like custody to be

If you and your spouse have children, it is important to note that any decision that you make regarding your divorce should not adversely affect the children. You should be aware that, save for extreme situations, you and your partner will end up with defined responsibilities of taking care of your children.

Hence, you should take some time to carefully assess your work schedule, your kids’ schedule, as well as other obligations that you might be having and make an appropriate custody plan. A lawyer can help you negotiate with your spouse on the best custody arrangement.

Gather all the necessary documents

Divorce proceedings rely heavily on the documents that are filed in court. You need to have records of your accounts, phone use, household expenditure, mortgages, car use and many others that may be pertinent to your divorce. As much as possible, you should try to gather the necessary documents and keep their copies before you file for divorce.

You should also obtain records of any shared accounts since some spouses may make getting such records difficult once you have served them the divorce papers.


A divorce may be emotionally draining and lengthy. Before you file for divorce, ensure that you follow the four key steps that have been discussed in this article.

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