1.) Are you sure? Make sure you have carefully thought it out and that divorce is the right path for you.
2.) Do your research. Ask your attorney about the laws, time requirements, and costs associated with a divorce. The more you understand the process and the costs associated with a divorce, the better you will feel throughout the process.
3.) Set your goals. Have an idea of what you are looking to accomplish both personally and financially. The process is a give and take, so be realistic about your expectations.
4.) Keeping the home? Make a budget and list all of your expenses. Does it make sense to keep the house? Consider hiring a real estate agent and get your home appraised.
5.) Consider custody. What is your ideal custody scenario? Make sure you put your kids first; rather than thinking of yourself or punishing your spouse.
6.) Get organized. Have a clear understanding of what assets you own, and what the value of your assets are. Are these joint assets, or individual assets? Also, make sure you know all of your creditors, and how much you owe on each of your accounts.
7.) How’s your credit? Obtain a credit report and determine how to improve your credit score, or how the divorce will impact your score.
8.) Hire the right team. In addition to an attorney that will make sure you understand the divorce process, have realistic expectations, and fight for a fair settlement, also consider speaking with a therapist and financial advisor.
9.) Take time for you. This is one of the most stressful times in your life. Make sure you have a good support system and remove stress from your daily life as much as possible.