Divorce proceedings have the unfortunate effect of throwing together two people who no longer want to be together. Depending on the causes for your divorce, you may not want to see or speak to your spouse at all, but some form of communication will be necessary as the legal process moves forward. Children can complicate things even further as you try to shield them from the effects of the decision. When you must speak to your soon-to-be-former spouse, follow these guidelines to ensure a safe, cordial, and efficient transaction.
Maintaining Clear Lines of Communication
Divorce is often accompanied by strong emotions and old grudges that can hamper effective communication. If you cannot meet your spouse in person without becoming sad or angry, consider contacting him or her only through email, text messages, phone calls or your divorce attorney. Bear in mind that written conversations can be used as evidence. Relying on attorneys is often the best option; this provides you with a degree of separation that can keep discussions civil and ensure that both parties receive the information they need.
When you first decide on divorce, both you and your spouse will be on shaky ground and uncertain how to move forward. Consult with your attorney beforehand and be firm in your demands. You must work out living arrangements, childcare and financial separation immediately, and you must protect yourself legally. Know what you want and be prepared to stand firm with your spouse. On the same principle, you should also be ready and willing to listen to your spouse's demands. Compromise is often the only amicable solution, so don't rule out bending on less important points of contention.
Whenever you are in written contact with your spouse, save the conversation for future reference. Anything that shows your involvement and contributions to the family or highlights your spouse's shortcomings can assist you in court. Your attorney will be able to choose the most beneficial documents from the records you supply, and also prepare for any records your spouse may possess regarding you.
Avoiding Further Conflict
Most importantly, make sure that your contact with your spouse is always polite and restrained. You may want to set meetings in a public space to promote civility. If you find that this is not possible, withdraw entirely and allow your attorney to handle all future negotiations. As all-consuming as divorce can be, stay focused on building a life for yourself afterward and try to foster a respectful post-divorce relationship with your spouse. By not allowing strong emotions to color your discussions, you can help encourage a relatively painless, short, and complication-free divorce.
To find a divorce attorney, contact a firm like Hart Law Offices, PC.