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Making a list to assist in the divorce process

For many married couples in Massachusetts, the end of their marriage is unthinkable. Even if statistics prove that it is likely that more than half of all marriage in the United States will end in divorce, some couples do not believe in thinking about or preparing for the possibility of divorce. This can make the reality of divorce a very difficult and complex time. This is especially true if the couple cannot agree on their finances.

A divorce with complex property division, alimony and other divorce issues can make the process more complicated. This is especially true when children are involved. The divorcing couple has much decision-making to do, which could lead to several disputes and issues they cannot agree on. In these matters, it might be helpful if the separating couple has a strategy to sort through all of these issues.

Such a task could simply mean taking out a piece of paper and writing down all the major issues such as child custody, child support and visitation. In addition, the person may want to make notes about what forms need to be filled out now and in the future, contact information for third parties and steps to complete asset transfers. Under each heading, the spouse should describe what needs to be done and how they seek to accomplish that task. Furthermore, that spouse should take a step further and designate how and if any of these issues could be adjusted, and if so, list a range for negotiating purposes.

Collecting all of this written information can help a spouse regain control while also preparing the dissolution to take a more collaborative approach. It gives the spouse a rational and realistic approach toward the divorce, which might allow for more reasonable negotiations.

No matter what approach a spouse or a divorcing couple takes, it is important that each individual understands the process and what steps need to be taken. This can help protect everyone involved while also serving his or her best interests.

Source: Huffington Post, "Divorce Warrior: Post-Apocalypse Survival Tips," Terri Weiss, Feb. 24, 2014

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