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How to get through divorce: essential tips

PUBLISHED: 11:53 02 March 2017 | UPDATED: 14:32 02 March 2017

How to navigate divorce

How to navigate divorce

Archant

If you are looking to commence divorce proceedings, these are some key things you need to be thinking about

As we settle into 2017, it is a good time to reflect on the start of the year. Sadly, the first couple of months often bring an increase in the number of relationships breaking down. In fact, the first Monday in January is often referred to as ‘Divorce Day’ as more people tend to contact their solicitor to commence divorce proceedings than on any other day of the year.

The decision to file for divorce is generally not an easy one, so what is it about this time of year that leads to individuals saying ‘enough is enough?’ Statistics show that arguing over the holiday period accounts for 29% of these new enquiries, 23% are as a result of an affair and 20% are enquiries from individuals who had in fact decided prior to the festive period that they wanted to start divorce proceedings but decided to postpone issuing any proceedings until after the Christmas period for the sake of the children.

If you are now looking to commence divorce proceedings, what are the key things you need to be thinking about?

The children

The first thing on most people’s mind generally is the children. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for parents to fall out over the care arrangements for the children and for children to get caught in the cross-fire. This can leave children feeling confused and torn between their loyalties to both of their parents; ultimately they can end up carrying war wounds from their parents’ divorce all the way through to their own adulthood and future relationships.

Separating is never easy and keeping emotions in check in front of children is a constant struggle for parents. Making sure you get the right support therefore is imperative, not only for your own wellbeing, but also for the wellbeing of your children.

The finances

Second on people’s minds will be the finances; what will happen to the family home? How will my income be affected? How do we deal with the family business? Will my pension be affected? These are just some of the questions which are commonly asked fairly early on when individuals are starting out in divorce proceedings.

Where possible it is generally beneficial to see if agreements can be reached amicably in respect of the appropriate division of the matrimonial assets. This is not always easy though, particularly if communications have completely broken down or there are pre-acquired assets, inheritances and/or family businesses involved. In these instances, there are a number of options out there for individuals to consider. Engaging in mediation is one option, instructing solicitors is another; but it is not uncommon for a mix of both approaches to be adopted. Of course in some instances the only option is to issue proceedings at Court. Whilst this can prove to be costly and stressful, with the right representation you can feel confident that you will secure a fair and appropriate settlement.

Mark Rennie, asb lawMark Rennie, asb law

For more information about the divorce process, or for family law advice, please contact Mark Rennie, Partner at asb law LLP on mark.rennie@asb-law.com or visit www.asb-law.com/family.

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