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3 mistakes people make when they decide to divorce

On Behalf of | Aug 21, 2023 | Family law

Divorce proceedings affect someone’s living arrangements, their parental obligations and their finances.

Although divorce is very common, the average person doesn’t quite understand what is at risk and the steps that they need to take to secure their interests. Therefore, mistakes are very common during divorce proceedings, and the errors that people make may leave them at a major disadvantage.

What are some of the most common and easily avoidable mistakes divorcing spouses make in Indiana?

They think their new account is separate property

One of the first pieces of advice people give those contemplating divorce is that they need to start their own checking account and possibly even secure separate credit cards so that they have resources for rebuilding after the divorce. People sometimes think that they can keep those funds to themselves, but they will need to disclose them to the courts and their spouses. Even separate accounts funded with resources earned during the marriage or subject to division during the divorce.

They set unrealistic goals

Some people have heard stories where a parent who discovers that their spouse cheated gets sole custody and cuts the other out of the lives of the children so that they can’t damage their sense of morality. Other people hear anecdotes about one person walking away with almost all of the marital assets. People sometimes set unrealistic goals and then waste time and money fighting for impossible outcomes.

They try to punish their spouse financially

Someone who feels upset about a divorce filing may want to find a way to cause a similar degree of emotional discomfort for their spouse. Some people attempt to punish their spouses by using money or property as a weapon. For example, they might burn someone’s clothing or sell their most valuable assets for pennies on the dollar to strangers as a punishment. Other times, they might empty marital bank accounts or max out shared credit cards as a way of trying to affect their spouse’s finances. The courts can adjust property division to reflect that kind of misconduct.

Many people also ignore a divorce filing or try to manage the process without support, only to wind up at a significant disadvantage. Any of those mistakes could lead to major consequences for someone hoping to divorce with the most resources possible for rebuilding their life. Learning about and avoiding common mistakes made early in the divorce process can help people navigate the end of their marriage more effectively.