Getting a divorce can be a lengthy and complicated process, and it’s easy to end up just focusing on getting through it. But it’s important to consider your long-term plans from when you begin divorce proceedings so that you know what you want from the divorce agreement and can prepare yourself for life after your divorce. Let’s take a look at how to plan for the future when you begin divorce proceedings.
Tips on Planning For the Future When You Begin Divorce Proceedings
Understand the Process
To be able to plan for the future, you need to fully understand the divorce process that you’re going to be going through. Research the basic process and get an idea of how it will apply in your situation and whether there are any significant complications you’re going to face that may hold things up.
You should also spend some time looking for the best way to handle your divorce. Many people think that litigation and going to court is the only route available for getting a divorce, especially if you have ended things on bad terms.
However, mediation, where both of you work with a neutral mediator to come to an agreement about all the aspects of your divorce, can still work. You need to find a good mediator, and although they don’t need to be a lawyer they should have a good understanding of divorce and family law. You should also consult with your own individual attorneys during the process and before signing the final agreement.
Another approach could be a collaborative divorce, where you agree to work out your settlement with your attorneys without going to court.
If possible, avoiding litigation and finding a way to divorce where you are both happy with the agreement can make it easier in the long term. You have better control over the process and are often more likely to get the financial outcome that you need. It can also reduce the amount you have to spend on getting your divorce.
Try to plan out as much as possible how you think your life will look after your divorce so that you have the right goals and can focus on getting what you need from the settlement.
Organize Your Finances
An important part of planning for the future when you’re getting a divorce is going to be getting your finances in order. Focusing on your financial considerations will also help you make better decisions during the process. Do some research into financial planning using sites such as MoneySense, or speak to a financial advisor.
Once you’re divorced, it’s important to get a clear idea of exactly how much you are spending on living expenses each month. Be aware of any bills that your partner has been covering, for example, if you’re on the same phone plan or car insurance.
If you’re only just covering these bills when you’re living together, you’re unlikely to be able to afford these after your divorce unless you can find a way to increase your income or reduce your expenses.
One of the biggest considerations of organizing your finances will be your living arrangements. If you are planning on staying in your family home, it’s important to understand exactly how much it is going to cost.
It’s not just about whether you can afford the mortgage payments on your own or the utility bills. How much does the upkeep of the property cost, and does it need any regular maintenance? Are you going to need to replace anything major in the near future? Does it need new appliances or building work? All of these will be your responsibility to pay for after the divorce.
Finding Somewhere Else to Live
If staying in your current home isn’t possible, now is the time to start looking for somewhere else to live. Again, you need to have a clear idea of how much renting or buying somewhere on your own is going to cost, as well as all the other living costs. This will help you budget and save for your move. It will also give you an understanding of what you need from the divorce agreement financially.
Start to look at different areas and properties that you would consider. Where do you need to be for work or family commitments, and what can you afford? If you want to buy a property then look into getting pre-approved for a mortgage so that you can get started on the buying process.
Find out the cost of utilities that you’re going to be paying using a comparison site like Energy Rates. Similarly, it’s worth doing some research into different insurance you’re going to need in a new home using a site like Duuo. Insurance comes in a range of options, so it’s important to find the plan that best suits you and your new circumstances. This will help you understand the full cost of moving home and setting yourself up in a new life after the divorce.
Getting a divorce is one of the biggest life changes you can go through, and it’s easy to isolate yourself away from friends and family during the process. But an important part of planning for the future is staying connected with them. You don’t have to cut yourself off from everyone and everything that was a part of your married life. Maintaining these relationships will help you set yourself up in a new life after your divorce.
Reassess Your Career Options
Now is a good time to look at your career options after your divorce. Whether you’ve taken some time out, have been working part-time, or just haven’t pushed yourself as much as you wanted, getting a divorce could be the starting point for refocusing on work.
Look at the options you have. Whether it’s going back to school or lining up a new job, start making plans now so that you can work this into your financial planning. By setting yourself up now with new career goals you might be able to boost your income and put yourself in a better financial position long term.
By thinking about the future now, you’ll be able to focus on the right things before you begin divorce proceedings and ensure you are better prepared financially and emotionally once it is completed.
Rachel Devitt is Content Specialist at Duuo, an online insurer creating modern insurance solutions to meet your modern needs. Duuo specialises in tenant insurance, offering flexible month-by-month contracts with no annual commitments and no cancellation fees. www.duuo.ca
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