You have decided to separate. During the separation/divorce process, you will need to make significant decisions that will affect you and your children for years to come.
We recommend that you follow the following five steps:
Gather your financial records
If you are organised before your initial consultation your instructions to your solicitor will be more effective and timesaving. You should immediately start gathering all of your financial records to include bank, loan, credit card, car loan and mortgage statements, tax returns, utility bills, insurance policies etc. for a minimum of 1 year and make an inventory of all property & assets.
Create a budget
Get an understanding of what your current monthly expenses living together are as well as what your projected monthly expenses will be after you have separated/ divorced and are living in separate households. Separation/divorce creates expense, not income, so this will help you to see what your financial options are when separating/divorcing.
There are sources for support that you can use to help you sort through this difficult experience and to learn how to deal with it in a constructive way. Consider counselling and/or therapy.
Deal with the separation/divorce openly & in a business-like way.There are options such as mediation to try to arrive at agreed points which will greatly reduce the stress, time and legal expenses.
Try to agree on access and formulate a co-parenting plan.
Secure funds for legal and other professional fees. If agreement cannot be reached it may be necessary to issue court proceedings, obtain tax advice and involve an auctioneer in valuing properties.