As a parent of minor children, dealing with child-related issues is likely to be among the most important aspects of your divorce. If you are thinking about getting divorced during the summer, it will be particularly important to consider the impacts that your divorce is likely to have on your children as they return to school in the fall. This is true not only with regard to the outcome of your divorce, but with regard to the divorce process as well.
Here are six considerations to keep in mind as you begin preparing for your divorce:
1. Your Divorce Will Not Be Over Before School Starts
Even if you file for divorce today, your divorce will not be over before school starts. California has a six-month waiting period for getting divorced. As stated on the California Courts website:
“This is a mandatory waiting period required by California law and no couple can be divorced faster than 6 months. You will be able to get all your paperwork turned in to the court and your divorce judgment approved, but the divorce itself will not be final until at least 6 months after starting the case.”
Even setting this mandatory waiting period aside, it takes time to work through the divorce process. While relatively simple divorces involving limited assets and disagreements can often be resolved in a matter of months, it is not unusual for contentious divorces to take much longer.
2. Getting Divorced is a Process
It is important to remember that getting divorced is a process. There is much more to getting divorced than filling out a few forms and filing them with your local court. You will need to take adequate steps to prepare, and you will need to remain actively engaged at each step along the way.
3. The Divorce Process Will Impact Your Children
No matter how hard to try to shield your children from your divorce, the process will affect them. Coping with a divorce while adjusting to a new school year can be emotionally challenging, and your children will need your support as much as (if not more than) ever before.
4. Protecting Your Privacy is Important
It is natural, and even healthy, for children to discuss stressful events in their lives with their friends and teachers. But, it is also important for parents to set boundaries. As your divorce progresses, your children are likely to learn information that you want to keep private, and helping your children understand what it is – and isn’t – okay to discuss will be important for several reasons.
5. Divorcing Parents Need to Maintain Civility
Regardless of how you feel about your spouse, when it comes to your children, you need to keep your emotions in check. Divorcing parents should not badmouth one another to their children, and they should avoid assigning blame or speaking openly about sensitive issues in their children’s presence.
6. You Can Implement Temporary Parenting Time and Child Support
If you and your spouse are not on speaking terms, if every discussion turns into an argument, or if you or your spouse has moved out of the family home, you can implement a temporary parenting time and child support schedule while your divorce is pending. This is often especially important during the school year, as divorcing parents need to continue to ensure that their children have necessary supplies and get where they need to be on time.
Request a Confidential Initial Divorce Consultation in North County, CA and Downtown San Diego, CA
If you live in the North County area and are thinking about filing for divorce, we encourage you to contact us for a confidential initial consultation. To request an appointment with divorce attorney and Certified Family Law Specialist Richard M. Renkin, please call 619-299-7100 or inquire online today.