After going through the entire process of deciding you want a divorce, hiring an attorney, going through with the divorce and finally signing on the dotted line it is understandable to want to take a deep breath and maybe a vacation. After all, you’ve just been through an extremely taxing situation from an emotional, physical and financial standpoint. Whatever the reason for the divorce, it is now done and over with and you can move on with the rest of your life. As I tell all of the clients I work with at the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, hopefully this is the last time you ever have to talk to a lawyer like me ever again.
Before you fully put the divorce behind you, however, there are some smart steps to take in order to set yourself up for a pain-free transition to the next phase of your life. Here are those items that I would highly recommend you look into doing prior to booking that vacation to someplace with palm trees and coconut adult beverages:
Work with your child’s school or daycare to update contact information for both parents
In case of an emergency this is the information that your child’s school or daycare will rely upon to contact you in case something happens during the school day. If you’ve moved make sure that the school has your most recent information. If you have a significant other who the school allows to pick up your child in case of an emergency make sure that his or her information is completed and any additional documentation has been provided to the administrators at the school or daycare.
Update your will, power of attorney documents, and beneficiaries that list your ex spouse’s name
It makes sense that as a married person that you would list your spouse’s name as a person who should be a beneficiary on insurance, savings, or investment documents should something happen to you. Likewise, in a will your estate’s contents would transfer to your spouse upon your death. Well, in case you haven’t noticed you are no longer married. The last thing you want is to have all your “stuff” go to your ex wife or husband after you’ve gone through the hardships of a divorce. Sit down and go through each of these documents and make updates where necessary
Update your personal and financial accounts online
Odds are that you and your spouse shared access to at least a few accounts or that your spouse had access to the login information for the accounts that you held separately from him or her. Once the divorce is finalized make sure to open up bank accounts in your own name or update your login information for previously held accounts in your name. Take note of any automatic withdrawals that may still be active on your formerly joint accounts. If there are debits that pertain to your former spouse you will need to inform your financial institution so that those can be removed.
For the ladies, if you are changing your last name make sure to update documents
I can remember when my wife and I got married all the paperwork she had to go through after she took my last name. The same type of behavior will be employed in this situation. Your social security card, bank, investment records, and passport (among other documents) will all need to be updated. To avoid issues with travel, applying for credit or undergoing a background for a new job it is best to update this information as quickly as possible once your divorce is finalized.
Put together a budget for your “new” household
The income for your home is going to change now that you are no longer married. Maybe you are looking for a new job that pays a little more money in order to compensate for losing your ex-spouse’s income? Maybe you would like to figure out where you can trim some budgetary fat to take into account a child support obligation? Whatever the reason it makes a lot of sense to update your budget based on the current financial landscape you are walking through. Getting yourself on a solid financial footing as you begin to rehabilitate your life is a good starting point.
Contact the District or County clerk where your divorce was heard and request multiple certified copies of your Final Decree of Divorce
I would say before doing this to contact your lawyer and make sure you understand all the provisions and orders contained in your Final Decree. This can be essential to a smooth transition into post-divorce life. If something doesn’t make sense to you make an appointment with your attorney to meet with him or her to discuss those questions. Requesting a number of certified copies of your final decree is smart because creditors, mortgage companies, financial institutions, governmental bodies, etc. may require one in order to update information for you or for other administrative reasons. If you are attempting to remove yourself from responsibility for payment on a loan or something similar a copy of your divorce decree may be essential to do so. Finally, having a copy of the decree at your home is handy in order to allow easy access to review specific language about your children or property as the need arises.
Questions on post-divorce life? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC today
When your divorce is finally complete be sure to pat yourself on the back. You made it through what could end up being the most difficult time of your life. Your wits are intact and hopefully your pocketbook is as well. If you have any other questions about post divorce life I would highly recommend that you contact the attorneys with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC. Our licensed family law attorneys can speak to you about your case and help you to plan both your divorce and your life once the divorce is done.
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Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC | Houston, Texas Divorce Lawyers
The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC 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, PLLC by calling (281) 810-9760 or submit your contact information in our online form. The Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC 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.