- by Mary Stearns-Montgomery
- in Divorce
An amicable divorce is a smart option for spouses who are ready to end their marriage and are willing to work together to do so. With an amicable divorce (or “friendly divorce”), each spouse still has the opportunity to protect what matters most in terms of property, financial support, and child custody rights, but both spouses commit to compromising when necessary in order to navigate the process without hostility.
How can you achieve an amicable divorce? You need to prepare and be willing to approach your divorce with an open mind. While an amicable divorce, and indeed any divorce, inherently involves elements of compromise, the more you do to get ready for the process, the better the outcome will generally be for both parties.
5 Tips to Achieve an Amicable Divorce:
1. Make a List of Your Personal and Shared Property and Debts Under Georgia law, each spouse is entitled to an “equitable” share of the couples’ shared property and liabilities in a divorce. Equitable does not necessarily mean equal, and rarely is it possible for spouses to truly split their assets and debts down the middle. In an amicable divorce, spouses have a significant amount of flexibility to divide their assets and debts as they see fit. However, in order to split your property and liabilities, you first need to know which assets and debts are on the table.
To get started, make a list of the property in your home, your financial accounts, your vehicles, real estate, credit cards, debts, retirement accounts, property in storage, and anything else that you own. Make note of any items that you or your spouse owned prior to your marriage, as these may not be subject to division in your divorce.
2. Consider Your Options for Resolving Your Differences Even in an amicable divorce, it is common for spouses to need help coming to terms on certain issues. Maybe you will both want to keep the family home or maybe you will need help structuring a parenting plan that works for each of you. There are a number of options available for resolving these types of differences, from informal negotiations to mediation and collaborative divorce.
3. Choose Your Own Attorney Who Will Work With Your Goals in Mind When pursuing an amicable divorce, it is important to have your own attorney. Your spouse will have his or her own attorney as well. This will ensure that you each receive unbiased legal advice and that you are able to make informed decisions with your own best interests in mind. You will need to listen to your attorney’s advice, but your attorney will also need to listen to your goals. Be sure you are on the same page with your attorney in terms of goals.
4. Learn More About the Issues Involved in Getting a Divorce As you move forward, you are likely to have lots of questions about what you can expect during your divorce and once your marriage is over. Our blog provides a wealth of information about everything from dealing with joint debts to protecting your 401(k).
5. Be Prepared for the Process to Take Time Finally, when preparing for a divorce, be prepared for the process to take time. From scheduling conflicts to the inherent complexities of transforming one household into two, be ready for the process to run its course. The more effort you put in, the better the result you will get out, and the more confident you will feel starting your new single life.
Speak with an Experienced Georgia Divorce Lawyer in Confidence
If you would like more information about preparing for an amicable divorce, we encourage you to contact us for an initial consultation. To speak with one of our experienced Georgia divorce lawyers in confidence, please call (678) 971-3413 or inquire online today.