A Washington Lawyer Discusses When to Get a Divorce

September 24, 2020

Divorce is on your mind, but you aren’t sure if now is the right time. The fact is that, if you aren’t sure, divorce may not be your best option. This is a determination that only you can make, but if you have come to the difficult decision that you do need a divorce, the time to get started with the process is likely right now. Delaying your divorce until the time is right isn’t going to do you or your family any favors. Consulting with an experienced and compassionate divorce lawyer in Bellevue can help you better understand the divorce process and how best to move forward.

There Is no Perfect Time for Divorce

If you are clear about your need for a divorce, there is no perfect time in the future that is going to make the matter easier. Divorce can take a considerable amount of time, and waiting to get the ball rolling is only a means of delaying the inevitable. Divorce is going to disrupt the life you’ve built, is going to hurt your children, and will almost certainly have significant financial consequences, but if you don’t face these issues now, you’re going to have to do so in the future, and allowing this burden to weigh on you can be almost as difficult as the divorce itself.

Consider the Outcome of Your Divorce

You have made the difficult decision that a divorce is the right choice for you. This means that now is the time to carefully consider the elements of your divorce and what they’re likely to mean for your future. If you have a clear plan going into the divorce process, it can help you move forward with increased confidence and purpose (even if everything does not go according to plan). Consider the following:

  • The Division of Your Community PropertyCommunity property is also called marital property, and it refers to those assets, debts, and properties that you and your spouse acquired together during the course of your marriage. In the State of WA, these assets must be divided in a way that is just and right – or fair – for both of you (given the specifics of your marriage). Generally, those properties that you and your spouse brought into the marriage with you – and keep separate throughout – will remain your own separate property and will not be divided upon divorce.
  • Child Custody Arrangements – In WA, child custody arrangements are referred to as conservatorship. These arrangements will address the issue of who will make significant decisions on behalf of your children (often called legal custody), including decisions about education, health care, religious upbringing, and extracurriculars. Additionally, you’ll need to determine whom the children will live with and when (often called physical custody). This can mean splitting your time with your children right down the middle, but it can also mean that one of you will become the primary custodial parent while the other has a visitation schedule. The important thing to remember is that the State of WA begins with the presumption that your children’s best interests are served by spending a considerable amount of time with both of you.
  • Child SupportChild support is generally calculated according to state guidelines, but the court will take any extenuating circumstances into account and may employ its considerable discretion to order an amount of child support that is outside these guidelines.
  • Spousal Maintenance – Spousal maintenance is commonly called alimony, and while it does not play a role in every divorce, it refers to payments (usually temporary in nature) that are made by the spouse with the financial means to do so to the spouse who has a financial need post-divorce. These payments are intended to help the payee move forward toward financial independence.

Don’t Delay Consulting with an Experienced Bellevue Divorce Lawyer

If you need a divorce, the right time to begin the process is now. The dedicated divorce lawyers at the Aberdeen Law Firm in Bellevue recognize that this wasn’t an easy decision for you to make, but they have the experience, compassion, and commitment to help. To discuss the matter in more depth, please don’t hesitate to contact or call us at (425) 363-9877 today.

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