Divorces can be unpredictable. Aside from emotions, there are many things
to consider during divorce proceedings – from the custody of children
and asset division, to other matters you may not even have considered.
The lives of spouses become closely linked during marriages, and all those
links must be unwound.
If you are considering divorce, it is in your best interest to understand
the process, the implications it can have on all the facets of your life,
and how your actions can affect your case so you are prepared and don’t
Here are some of the more common issues that come as a surprise to many
after deciding to divorce.
Divorce Takes Time
You can go to Las Vegas or the local courthouse and be married in a matter
of minutes. The divorce process, however, takes time. Understand that
there are a lot of moving parts involved and that it will take time to
negotiate, revise negotiations, and, in some cases, litigate a case. The
general rule of thumb is that the more complex and/or adversarial your
case is, the longer it will take. Complexity can arise from issues like
child custody, complicated assets or debt, business interests, retirement
accounts and investments, medical or psychological issues, etc.
If you have health insurance through your spouse, you will need to consider
how you can obtain health insurance of your own and prepare yourself for
the expense. By taking your health care into account early on in the divorce
process, you can ensure there are no lapses in coverage.
Spouses will commonly name each other as beneficiaries for life insurance
policies, retirement accounts, estate plans, and other legal instruments.
You should be aware of any policies you may hold and whether you will
need to change the beneficiary. Even after the divorce is finalized, your
spouse will still be the beneficiary of your policies if you do not manually
Property division, or determining who gets what, is a well-known part of
divorce, but it’s more than just who gets the house and who keeps
the car. Property division can also mean division of debt, and debts are
treated the same as any other type of property. If debt is incurred during
a marriage, Oregon law stipulates that the debt will be split accordingly.
Often, spouses can get surprised by debts or amounts of debt they didn’t
know they had.
What you say and do during a divorce can impact your case. Don’t
be surprised if inflammatory statements made in person, over the phone,
or even on social media are introduced as evidence of your character or
in support of your spouse’s stance on negotiations.
Read more on how to safely navigate social media and digital communications
in a divorce in our online guide.
The best way to avoid unpredictable issues and complications during divorce
is to work with an experienced family law attorney. McKinley Irvin is
the Northwest’s premier divorce and family law firm because we take
the time to work closely with clients and educate them about their rights
and what to expect. To discuss your situation with a member of our team,
contact us today. We represent clients throughout Oregon and Washington
from multiple office locations.