Call (347) 797-1188 | (914) 362-3080 Now To Schedule A 20-minute Case Assessment Or Full 50-minute Case Strategy Consultation!

Law Offices Of David Bliven
Law Offices Of David Bliven
  • White Plains Office 19 Court Street
    Suite 206
    White Plains, NY 10601
  • Bronx Office 3190 Riverdale Avenue
    Suite 1
    Bronx, NY 10463

Top 4 Mistakes To Avoid When You’re Going Through A Divorce

Distressed couple on bed, man covering face - Law Offices Of David BlivenIn this article, you can discover…

  • The common errors people make when going through a divorce
  • What to do to avoid these mistakes
  • How you and your lawyer can prepare for divorce hearings

Mistake Number One: Lack Of Organization

The biggest mistake that you can make during a divorce process involves a lack of organization and not having all your documentation ready. The best thing you can do for yourself is to get your paperwork organized beforehand, and go over it with your lawyer.

The paperwork your lawyer will need will include your latest W-2 and most recent tax returns. This will help your lawyer calculate potential child support and will allow greater transparency with the other party in the divorce.

Other documents to have on hand include:

  • Your latest mortgage statement
  • All bank account statements
  • Investment account statements
  • Retirement account statements

Make sure all of these statements are from the most recent month. Having this up-to-date documentation will allow your lawyer to better determine asset distribution and equity value. It’s also important to give your lawyer a timeline of when you and the other party last lived together, and how these living arrangements overlap with financial statements.

Why is this important? It’s not uncommon for a client to have last lived with their partner over a year ago, and to have assets that accrued after one party moved out. In that case, your lawyer can look over the dates of marriage, separation, and divorce to argue for helping you keep assets that accrued after separation. Giving your lawyer the full picture and being organized both go a long way in helping you navigate divorce with less stress – and more peace of mind.

Mistake Two: Not Meeting Often Enough With Your Lawyer

The next biggest mistake that you can make if you’re going through a divorce is to avoid meeting with your lawyer. While these meetings can and do take up time, it is much better for both the lawyer and you to be prepared and on the same page.

How often should you meet with your attorney? We recommend scheduling a meeting with your lawyer before each court date. This is especially important if the divorce process involves disputes over things like assets, property, child support, or custody. The more prepared both you and the lawyer are before every court date, the easier it will be for them to understand your perspective and argue your case. You should also consider meeting with your lawyer for a “debrief” following each court appearance.

Attorney David Bliven is a knowledgeable and compassionate lawyer based in New York, who has helped countless men and women just like you navigate the difficulties of divorce law. Don’t go at this alone. With over 25 years of experience in family law, David Bliven brings with him the discipline, experience, and attention to detail to help you move forward and protect what’s yours.

Still have questions? Or simply want to discuss your case? Contact The Law Offices of David Bliven today to schedule an initial consultation today.

Mistake Three: Assuming That Assets In Your Name Can’t Be Divided

Many clients assume that if a house or an investment account is in their name alone, their spouse can’t be awarded any of it. However, this is untrue. In the State of New York, the principle of “equitable distribution” means a spouse can get 50% of “marital assets,” even if those assets weren’t in both of your names.

Laws in the State of New York define anything that is acquired or increased in (“active”) value over the course of the marriage to be an asset that could be divided in a divorce. It’s important for you to understand that just because something is in your name alone, it doesn’t mean it remains with you in a divorce. Understanding this law can help you be ready for the court process and better equipped to move forward financially.

Mistake Number Four: Not Documenting Spousal Behavior

When your divorce case involves custody or visitation rights, it’s very important to document negative behavior from your spouse. This helps your lawyer (and the court) understand your perspective as a parent. But what does this look like, practically speaking?

We recommend that when you begin to notice negative changes in your spouse’s behavior, you keep a daily journal. This should include written and dated descriptions of events. You should also be making records of when you step up to the plate to take your children to doctor’s appointments, help them with homework, or take them on play dates while your spouse does not. All of this documentation can go a long way in the courtroom and can help your trial move more smoothly.

When dealing with alcohol or substance abuse issues or mental health problems, consistent documentation is especially important. This documentation can take the form of photos or videos of a spouse under the influence, text messages describing the problem and urging your spouse to get help, an audio recording of your spouse making verbal threats or screaming, or paperwork relating to arrests for drug, alcohol, or behavioral offenses.

The more evidence you have, the better we can prepare your case.

For more information on Common Mistakes In A NY Divorce, an initial legal consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (914) 362-3080 today.

Attorney David Bliven is a knowledgeable and compassionate lawyer based in New York, who has helped countless men and women just like you navigate the difficulties of divorce law. Don’t go at this alone. With over 25 years of experience in family law, David Bliven brings with him the discipline, experience, and attention to detail to help you move forward and protect what’s yours.

Still have questions? Or simply want to discuss your case? Contact The Law Offices of David Bliven today to schedule an initial consultation today.