10 Common Divorce Mistakes to Avoid

Divorce Mistake

Bad decisions during a divorce can add to the stress and even increase the cost of your divorce. Here is a list of 10 common divorce mistakes made by parties.

Divorce Mistake#1: Making major decisions before consulting with a divorce lawyer

Before making major decisions it is crucial that you consult with a divorce lawyer. The actions taken by a party during a separation can have significant implications on their legal rights. While a decision you want to make may not seem complicated, the implications can be significant down the road.

Divorce Mistake#2: Trying to make your own separation agreement without legal advice

This is another common mistake made by separated couples. Some couples think that they can simply download a separation agreement template online and make their own separation agreement. While it is true that in the simplest of cases this method may work, but this is rarely the case if you are dealing with issues relating to support, children and property. Separation agreements are routinely overturned on the basis that a party did not have legal advice or that the drafting was vague or incomplete.

Divorce Mistake#3: Vacating the matrimonial home without consulting with a lawyer

Unless your life is in danger, it is typically not wise to vacate the matrimonial home without consulting with a lawyer. Vacating the matrimonial home can have significant implications relating to child custody. In addition, vacating the matrimonial home can result in significant financial consequences in some cases.

Divorce Mistake#4: Relying on friends and family for legal advice

This is unfortunately very common. Parties assume that every divorce is the same. Relying on legal advice from your friends and family who may have gone through a divorce can lead to unrealistic expectations and inaccurate information. While friends and family are a great source for emotional support, they are not legal professionals.

Divorce Mistake#5: Involving the children in parental conflict

This is another common mistake during a divorce. Leave the children out of parental conflict. Children should not be updated on proceedings and should not be involved in the divorce case. The needs of the children and their best interest must always be given priority.

Divorce Mistake#6: Not keeping a journal

Always keep a journal of what is happening during your separation. If your matter ends up in litigation, having a well preserved journal of what happened during separation will make it much easier when preparing your court documents.

Divorce Mistake#7: Giving cash to your spouse

If you are the support payor, do not give your spouse cash for support payments. All payments must be made using a traceable method. Cheque, email money transfers and other traceable methods are acceptable. If you pay by cash, assume that you have not made the required payment.

Divorce Mistake#8: Failure to make a budget and live within your means

Separated and divorced couples must come to terms with the fact that their living standard will not be the same as it was during the marriage.

Divorce Mistake#9: Not providing complete and accurate financial disclosure

This is a major issue. If you are going through a divorce you must provide complete and accurate financial disclosure to the other party. Failing to do so can result in significant court costs and cost you more in the long run.

Divorce Mistake#10: Letting emotions rule your actions

Yes, divorce is emotional. However, in order to resolve your case amicably and reduce the cost, it is important to not let your emotions take over negotiations. Battle of the egos have resulted in parties wasting thousands of dollars in drawn out court battles.

For more information about obtaining a divorce, please contact our Toronto divorce lawyer here.

NOTICE AND DISCLAIMER: The material posted on this website is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal advice. If you need legal advice, please consult with a family lawyer

Other Articles to Read
General Steps in Obtaining a Divorce
How to get a quick and cheap divorce in Ontario

Helpful Resources:

Divorce and Separation
Family Justice Services
Child Custody and Access
Child Support
Division or Equalization of Family Property
Treatment of a Matrimonial Home
Enforcement of Support Payments
Child Protection
Child Adoption

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