How to achieve a successful divorce from a financial perspective

There are some people in the world that would have you believe that money is the root of all evil. The Bible says that it is easier for a camel to walk through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to get into Heaven. Ray Charles once sang, “The best things in life are free”.

Despite these both fresh and well established takes on money, the green pieces of paper or the plastic cards in your wallet are neither good or bad things. They are merely things. Things that can be helpful to you and your family when utilized intelligently and things that can work to the detriment of your family when not utilized intelligently. Money possesses no more power than we allow it to have and when it comes down to it we get to make that decision.

With that said, if you are considering a divorce from your spouse you have probably thought a time or two about how the divorce will affect your relationship with the green paper or plastic cards that I mentioned a moment ago. It’s not bad that you’re having those thoughts, either. You’ve worked hard for that green paper and after the divorce your household will have less of it as you are no longer going to be splitting costs with another human being (at least for a little bit).

Your divorce will be different than your neighbor’s, your best friend’s and your co-worker’s. That is a simple truth that I think every family law attorney in Texas could agree with. There is no one size fits all prescription on how to handle divorce from a financial perspective but there are some general truths that I have found to be applicable for families across our State. With that’s said, let’s begin our discussion with some of those truths.

Finding representation is crucial to succeeding with money in your divorce

Divorce Lawyers cost money. Lawyers are an investment. Lawyers are sometimes not the sort of people you would want to have lunch with or share an afternoon cup of coffee with. Speaking as a lawyer, we understand these things and will try to be on our best behavior around you. All kidding aside, hiring one of us will make a difference in your divorce.

Having a person by your side who knows the divorce process and understands how to problem solve and approach difficult issues can be a huge advantage to you and your family.

One of those advantages is peace of mind, both in the present and future. For the present time, a lawyer will act as your intermediary and lead negotiator. If you are experiencing difficulties in even speaking to your spouse you can eliminate that concern by hiring an attorney to speak on your behalf.

This doesn’t mean that your divorce attorney gets to do what he or she wants from a negotiation perspective. You will dictate what is negotiated upon and how the terms will be laid out to your spouse. However, the emotional component that you and your spouse bring into the case will be eliminated because your attorneys will act on your behalf as your (hopefully) more rational and dispassionate adviser. This will save you stress, time and money.

Communication with your lawyer is essential. If you don’t plan on communicating with your representative or being responsive to his or her questions or requests then you may as well not hire a lawyer at all. You may have had people in your life talk to you previously about their own experiences with lawyers not being so great at communicating themselves.

Well, while that may be true, I have found that clients are just as guilty of struggling to communicate with regularity as attorneys are.

With that said, if your attorney asks you to fill out some paperwork and return it to him or her in a certain time period it is best to do that. An example that will occur early on in your divorce case is that your attorney will likely ask you to review and complete a document known as an Inventory and Appraisement.

This form asks you to go through your financial life and list assets, property and debts so that spouse and the judge can get your perspective about you and your spouse have in terms of financial resources. This document is to be signed by you as being correct and true so a judge can rely upon it in a hearing if necessary. Translation: communicating with your divorce attorney early and often about this form is crucial to your financial success in a temporary orders hearing or trial.

Finally, if you want to take advantage of your attorney’s experience to the greatest extent it is wise to speak to him or her early in your case about when a good time to speak on a weekly basis will be. Everyone is busy: attorneys, clients, etc.

From an attorney’s perspective it is frustrating to contact a client repeatedly only to get no response to a question that is extremely important. I can imagine that you would feel the same way if you could not get a hold of your attorney with a question of your own.

Finding out if a phone call or e-mail works better and a specific day of the week to get updates and communicate important messages is smart to discuss early in your attorney-client relationship. Forging this sort of open line of communication can assist in ensuring no information falls between the cracks that could be used to help you in your divorce.

Part Two of our series on Divorce from a financial perspective coming tomorrow

In our second part of this series on divorce from a financial perspective, the attorneys with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan will share with you how goal setting in the area of your finances is important and how to think about what your spouse’s goals might be as well.

If you have any questions about your own divorce situation or any information that we discussed in today’s blog post please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. A free of charge family law consultation with one of our licensed family law attorneys is just a phone call away.

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Other Articles you may be interested in:

  1. Divorce when economic times are tough
  2. How to achieve a successful divorce from a financial perspective, Part Three
  3. How to achieve a successful divorce from a financial perspective, Part Two
  4. How a mortgage is handled in a Texas Divorce
  5. Should I Hide Money from my Spouse to Get Ready for my Texas Divorce?
  6. Why is Separate Property Important and How to Keep it Separate in a Texas Divorce?
  7. What Wikipedia Can’t Tell you About Texas Divorce and Marital Property Division
  8. Texas Divorce Property Division Enforcement
  9. Separate Property in a Texas Divorce?
  10. Does it Matter Whose Name is on Title or Deed of Property in a Divorce in Texas?
  11. Is Social Security Considered Separate Property in a Texas Divorce
  12. Business Owners and Business Assets in a Texas Divorce
  13. What to do when your divorce decree does not include a marital asset?

Law Office of Bryan Fagan | Houston, Texas Divorce Lawyers

The Law Office of Bryan Fagan routinely handles matters that affect children and families. If you have questions regarding Divorce, it's important to speak with one of our Houston, TX Child Divorce Lawyers right away to protect your rights.

Our Divorce lawyers in Spring TX are skilled at listening to your goals during this trying process and developing a strategy to meet those goals. Contact Law Office of Bryan Fagan by calling (281) 810-9760 or submit your contact information in our online form. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan handles Divorce cases in Houston, Texas, Cypress, Klein, Humble, Kingwood, Tomball, The Woodlands, the FM 1960 area, or surrounding areas, including Harris County, Montgomery County, Liberty County, Chambers County, Galveston County, Brazoria County, Fort Bend County and Waller County.

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