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Should you be the first to file for divorce?

There are a lot of complex legal questions to ask once it becomes clear that a marriage is over. Among these questions is whether it is important or necessary to try to be the first spouse to file for the divorce. While some people don’t have this opportunity because a spouse may file without warning, others may get a sense that the end is approaching and can take some time to consider if they would like to commence the action or wait for their spouse to commence it.

Either way, there are some important steps that one can take if a divorce or a legal separate seems to be on the horizon. The first is to organize a comprehensive set of copies of all available financial information. This means collecting recent tax returns, 401(k) statements, bank accounts, credit card statements, and perhaps getting appraisals on valuable assets like the home, jewelry, art work, cars, or antiques. Taking this step prior to filing is helpful because it can prevent a soon-to-be-ex spouse from attempting to hide assets or conceal the value of jointly or separately held property.

Of course, divorce also comes with many emotional difficulties along with the financial ones. This is why in addition to consulting with an experienced family law specialist, many Nevada readers also find it helpful to seek help from a therapist in advance of filing for a divorce. A therapist can help provide support and make it easier to work through emotional problems separately from the financial considerations, often leading to a better result in both senses.

Source: Forbes, “What Are The Financial And Legal Advantages Of Being First To File For Divorce?” Jeff Landers, March 26, 2013

More information about steps to take in preparing for a divorce can be found on our Nevada family law page.

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