In the fast-paced world of business, the term “exit strategy” signifies a calculated move to minimize losses and maximize gains when parting ways with a venture. Similarly, in the realm of divorce, having an exit strategy empowers you to navigate the end of your marriage with minimal disruption and loss, setting the stage for a positive post-divorce journey.

By crafting an exit strategy early on, you pave the way for a smoother transition into your new life. In fact, taking proactive steps before formally filing for divorce or even alerting your spouse that you are considering it can significantly shape the outcome of the process.

It’s crucial to recognize that striving for a brighter future for yourself and, if applicable, your children, is not selfish. Taking proactive measures to shape your destiny ensures that the life you envision stays within reach. You should embrace the opportunity to design your exit strategy and embark on a journey toward fulfillment and empowerment!

In this blog, we’ll explore 4 essential factors to consider when designing your divorce exit strategy, which you can tailor to your unique circumstances. Whether you adopt these suggestions or take your own approach, always keep your long-term goals in sight.

1. Begin Cataloging Important Dates And Times

Taking the time to keep your own account (or even record the accounts of witnesses, like close friends or family members) of the significant events leading up to your divorce could work in your favor later on. This could be as simple as keeping a notebook (remember to store it in a place where your spouse is unlikely to find it) or a running document in the notes app on your phone.

For example, if you have discovered that your spouse has had, or is currently, having an affair, you should keep a record of any dates and times related to it. If you have kids, part of your divorce proceedings will center around the custody arrangement you and your spouse will follow once the divorce is final, so keep record of things regarding your children, as well. Some examples may be that your spouse declined to attend your child’s parent-teacher conference or stopped attending sporting events. If your child made a comment which clearly demonstrates that their parent’s negative behavior is affecting them emotionally, keep a record of what they said and when they said it.

Dates and times relating to your finances are important as well, such as your spouse making a large withdrawal from your joint bank account with no explanation, making a large purchase that you did not discuss beforehand, or you finding out that they had a credit card you didn’t know they had.

It would be especially critical to keep a record of any instances of domestic violence, abuse, harassment, or threats to your or your kids’ safety, as well as the dates and times they were reported to law enforcement if that action was warranted.

Additionally, any time you witnessed your spouse abuse a substance, like alcohol or drugs, should be documented.

2. Begin Gathering Relevant Documents And Records

There are a lot (seriously, a lot) of official documents and records you’ll need to gather as well, so the sooner you can get started doing this, the more prepared you’ll be. You’ll want to gather:

    • Your marriage certificate
    • Your prenuptial agreement (if applicable)
    • Financial records, like bank statements, tax returns, investment account statements, retirement account statements, pension statements, property deeds, mortgage documents, loan agreements, credit card statements, and more
    • Income records, like pay stubs, employment contracts, business ownership documents, profit and loss statements, and more
    • Expense documentation, like household bills, childcare expenses, education expenses, medical expenses, personal expenses, and more
    • Asset documentation, like vehicle titles and registrations, real estate documents, valuations of valuable assets, and more
    • Debt documentation, like loan agreements, credit card statements, and outstanding bills or invoices
    • Insurance policies, like health, life, or property
    • Estate planning documents, like wills, trusts, or power of attorneys
    • Child-related documents, like birth certificates, school records, medical records, and more
    • Communication records, like emails, texts, voicemails, and letters
    • Other relevant legal documents, like court orders

3. Assess Your Assets And Debts

Your spouse may not be happy when they find out that you are filing for divorce, which may cause them to act in a vindictive manner, especially when it comes to the finances. This is why it is important to assess your assets and debts before divorce proceedings begin. That way, if they attempt to spend down or hide your shared assets, you can prove it.

In Texas, all assets acquired during the marriage are considered the shared property of both spouses, and will be subject to “just and right” division (which does not always mean equal). As already stated, this is why it is necessary to compile relevant documentation, like bank statements, credit card statements, loan agreements, outstanding bills, and the like.

4.Meet With A Divorce Attorney

Yes, even if you aren’t ready to formally file yet, you should meet with a divorce attorney. Not only can they help you fine-tune your exit strategy, but they can also help you understand the “why” behind each step and make taking the first step easier.

This is your chance to share the important dates and times you recorded, present some (if not all) of the documents you gathered so far, and give them a glimpse into your current financial situation. From there, an experienced attorney can tell you what to focus on between now and your next meeting, help you determine when the right time to file is, and answer all of your burning questions.

Your Exit Doesn’t Have To Mean “The End.” Take Charge Of Your Journey And Set The Course For Your New Beginning Today

Here at Hembree Bell, we believe that it is every person’s right to pursue a beautiful life. We know that with compassionate, experienced, and strategic legal guidance, our team can help you achieve the vision you have for your future! You can trust us to protect your kids and your money while we help your marriage end well. Call today to schedule your free case evaluation and learn more about how we can give you an advantage!

Contact us for
free case evaluation

    Related Posts

    Join Thousands Of Happy Clients

    WE PROTECT YOUR KIDS, YOUR MONEY, & YOUR BUSINESS