There’s no doubt that divorce can be stressful and downright overwhelming. To get through the process as strongly as possible, you have to be prepared to confront challenging legal issues, too, which can be difficult and heart-breaking. This is why preparation is key.
By thoroughly preparing your divorce strategy, you can better position yourself to obtain the outcome that’s right for you. While much of that involves understanding the law and how it applies to your unique set of circumstances, it also means knowing some common misconceptions about divorce so that you can more confidently navigate your marriage dissolution.
What are some of the most common misconceptions about divorce?
- You’ll receive half of the marital estate: A lot of people who go into divorce think that they’re going get half of everything. But that isn’t necessarily the case. Under Pennsylvania law, you’ll be entitled to an equitable split, meaning a fair division, of marital assets, but that doesn’t guarantee that you’re going to acquire half of the marital estate.
- You’ll be financially ruined post-divorce: While you might feel a financial pinch as you move into the next chapter of your life, there are steps that you can take to protect your financial stability. Creating a strong budget can help, but by identifying what you need post-divorce you can set the parameters of your divorce settlement negotiations. That way you’re targeting what you need to be stable and successful once your marriage is dissolved.
- You’re better off taking your case to court: A lot of people are so angry at their spouse that they think airing everything in court and letting a judge decide is their best option. That’s probably not the case in your situation, though. Although you might have to litigate some contentious issues, you’re likely to obtain a better outcome that is more tailored to your needs if you negotiate a resolution rather than leaving the matter in the hands of a judge who doesn’t know you and your family.
- You can get what you want out of your divorce if your spouse cheated on you: Infidelity can add a heightened emotional component to your divorce. And while it may be a contributing factor to how key legal issues will be resolved, your spouse’s unfaithfulness won’t allow you to do whatever you want during the divorce process.
- Only mothers obtain custody of their children: Child custody laws are gender neutral, meaning that either parent can be awarded sole custody, or the court may find that joint custody is appropriate. What’s key to remember is that the court is going to render a decision that it thinks is in the child’s best interests. So, as you prepare your custody arguments, you’ll want to make sure you’re paying close attention to the best interest factors.
There are a lot of misconceptions out there about divorce. If you’re considering marriage dissolution or are already in the process, then you’ll be better off understanding what the process actually entails and how you can competently navigate it.