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Preparing for Divorce

Schwartz, Hanna, Olsen, & Taus, P.C. July 5, 2024

Spouses split up disputing about divorce settlement in lawyers officeDivorce is a significant life event that can be emotionally, mentally, and financially draining. For many, it’s a process filled with uncertainties and tough decisions. However, with the right guidance and resources, it is possible to navigate through divorce and come out stronger on the other side. 

At our firm, our goal is to provide you with comprehensive guidance on how to prepare for divorce. Our goal is to ensure that you’re well-informed and equipped to handle the challenges ahead, making the transition as smooth as possible. It's important you know what to consider before filing, understand different types of divorces, and learn the necessary steps to prepare for the process. 

Things to Consider Before Filing for Divorce 

Before you take the step to file for divorce, it’s crucial to evaluate several important factors that can impact your future. 

Emotional Readiness 

Before taking the legal plunge, it’s crucial to assess your emotional readiness. Divorce can be a rollercoaster of emotions, and being mentally prepared will help you cope better with the changes. Ask yourself if you’ve exhausted all other options and are genuinely ready to move on. 


Counseling can play a vital role in preparing for divorce. Whether it’s individual therapy or couples’ counseling, professional guidance can help you sort through your emotions and make clear-headed decisions. It’s also beneficial for any children involved, as counselors can offer support and coping strategies. 

The Type of Divorce 

Understanding the different types of divorces is essential for choosing the right path for your situation. 

Contested Divorce 

A contested divorce is when both parties cannot agree on key issues like asset division, child custody, or alimony. This type often involves court intervention and can be lengthy and expensive. 

Collaborative Divorce 

In a collaborative divorce, both parties work with their attorneys to resolve disputes amicably. It’s less adversarial and promotes open communication and cooperation. 


Mediation involves a neutral third party who helps both spouses reach an agreement. It’s typically faster and less costly than a contested divorce, offering more control over the outcome. 

Living Situation 

Deciding your living situation is another critical step. Will one spouse stay in the marital home, or will both parties seek new residences? Consider the impact on any children and ensure that the arrangements are in their best interest. Consult a family law attorney for advice on how to manage this aspect efficiently. 

Steps to Take to Prepare for the Divorce Process 

Properly preparing for the divorce process can help alleviate stress and ensure a smoother transition. 

Hire an Experienced Family Law Attorney 

An experienced family law attorney can make a world of difference in navigating the complexities of divorce. They can provide valuable insights and legal advice tailored to your unique situation. If you’re located in the New Jersey areas of Somerset County, Morris County, Passaic County, Essex County, and Bergen County, or anywhere else in the state, contact Schwartz, Hanna, Olsen, & Taus, P.C. for a consultation. 

Secure Assets and Accounts 

Securing your financial assets and accounts is crucial. Make copies of important documents, cancel joint accounts, and change personal passwords. Ensure that you have control over your individual finances to prevent any unauthorized transactions. 

Gather Personal Information 

Collecting personal information about yourself and your spouse is essential. This includes proof of residency, employment information, and any other pertinent details. Having this information readily available will streamline the legal process. 

Assess Financial Situation 

Understanding your financial situation is key. Determine what assets you have and what you'll need post-divorce. Gather information on any debts, including mortgages, loans, and credit card balances. This will help you and your attorney develop a sound financial strategy. 

Identify Personal/Married Property 

Identify and categorize personal and marital property. This includes real estate, vehicles, household items, and personal belongings. Gather any paperwork pertaining to these items, such as titles, deeds, and receipts. Clear documentation will facilitate fair asset division. 

Collect Legal Documents 

Gather all relevant legal documents, including tax returns, insurance policies, and documents related to any businesses you or your spouse own. Having these documents organized and accessible will expedite the legal proceedings and ensure that nothing is overlooked. 

Prepare for Tomorrow, Today 

Preparing for divorce is a process that requires careful planning and consideration. By understanding the different aspects of divorce, from emotional readiness to securing assets, you can approach this life change with confidence and clarity.  

Remember, you don’t have to go through this alone. If you’re located in the New Jersey areas of Somerset, Morris, Passaic, Essex, and Bergen Counties, or anywhere else in the state, contact Schwartz, Hanna, Olsen, & Taus, P.C. to help you through this challenging time. Take the first step towards a brighter future by ensuring you’re well-prepared for the road ahead.