Fabio & Merrill

Houston Divorce Blog

How can you protect yourself during your divorce?

You and your spouse have decided that divorce is the only remaining option to resolve the marital conflict that has been a persistent problem. While you feel a sense of relief that your volatile relationship will be drawing to a close, you are also ridden with anxiety about what this significant change will mean for you. Fortunately, there are proactive steps you can take to protect your wellbeing as you work hard to adjust to your new normal. 

Trying to be sneaky or get away with things undetected during your divorce can only create bigger problems. In fact, it can actually hurt your case and hinder your eligibility to receive benefits like alimony. According to Live About, divorce can be a dirty game. When you are aware of common tricks that people often try to get away with during divorce, you may be able to watch for red flags from your ex. Some of the things you should watch out for include the following:

  • Your spouse racking up all kinds of bills on a credit card.
  • Your spouse falsely accusing you of abuse and filing a petition to keep you away from your home. 
  • Your spouse accessing your joint bank account and draining all of the funds.
  • Your spouse withholding communication from you about problems he or she has noticed. 
  • Your spouse petitioning the court for sole custody of your children without providing evidence of why that recommendation is being made. 

Preventing the stress of your divorce from hurting your success

While you may be feeling relieved that you and your spouse are filing for divorce, reality is setting in that your life is about to change drastically. First off, you will have to reconsider your future and reassess your goals. Second, there are decisions to make regarding your finances and retirement needs. Third, if you have children, you will need to try and maintain a schedule and help them understand what is happening. At Fabio + Merrill Attorneys at Law, we have helped many people in Texas to work through divorce as efficiently as possible. 

Because your life is no longer what you have been used to for the past however many years, the uncertainty of your future has probably caused you to feel a bit stressed and uneasy. According to Live About, your efforts to take good care of yourself should be prioritized so you can protect your sanity and stay focused on success. Here are some of the things you can do:

  • Make sure you are getting plenty of sleep and allowing your body time to recover.
  • Change up your surroundings by painting your room or rearranging your furniture. 
  • Stay active and make time to exercise whenever you can. Additionally, develop new habits and avoid turning to addictive behaviors to cope. 
  • Find productive and enjoyable ways to let go of negative emotions. 
  • Eat healthy food and make sure you get a good variety of foods each day. 

Four assets you need to value before a divorce

Dividing family assets is a difficult step during a divorce, especially with significant assets such as a house, rental property and stock options. Even in the most amicable divorces, it is challenging to split belongings with a former spouse.

Before you decide who gets the house, you need to assess the property and assets you have. Establishing the value of those belongings makes the division process easier for you and your spouse.

4 critical factors that affect alimony and spousal maintenance

Financial stability can be a top concern for anyone getting divorced in Texas. However, if you were financially dependent on your spouse during your marriage, you can be particularly worried about how you will support yourself after divorce.

In some cases, spouses are eligible to collect alimony or spousal maintenance. To determine if you might be in a position to collect financial support after divorce, you will want to consider the following factors.

The right approach to go about asset separation during divorce

While a couple may feel relieved to finally be starting the process of divorcing in Texas, they now have to work through the often-complicated process of deciding who will get what. Often, couples have accumulated a lot of stuff over time. While most of it can be easily parted with, there are other belongings that may have sentimental value to both parties. When people understand the right way to go about dividing shared assets, their outcome may be a bit more productive and beneficial. 

According to the Huffington Post, a few examples of items that are considered shared property include the following:

  • Cars and boats.
  • Expensive artwork, collectibles and heirlooms.
  • Bank accounts, IRAs, retirement accounts and life insurance policies.
  • Real estate, tax refunds and professional practices.

Relocation matters: What to consider before relocating

When you got a divorce, you and your spouse were happy to split custody. You both lived close together, and it was easy to share time with your child. Now, that's no longer the case, and it is beginning to cause problems.

As you've worked hard in your company, you're receiving more opportunities. You want to take one that would require you to move, but you don't want to leave your child behind. What should you do?

Helping teenagers to cope with divorce in healthy ways

When discussions about children and their divorcing parents take place, there is often a significant amount of focus placed on children who are young and still forming relationships with their parents. However, not much is said of teenagers and how difficult the separation of their parents could be for them. Many adolescents in Texas who are struggling with the separation of their parents are experiencing all kinds of emotions as they try to sort through the stories they hear and come to terms with the sudden changes in their family. 

According to kidshealth.org, some children feel guilty about their parents' divorce and could even go so far as to believe that their parents problems were their fault. Other feelings that teenagers may experience include anger, abandonment, stress and worry. Many teenagers face concerns about how their life will change and how the divorce will affect where they live, their relationships with friends and their experience in school. 

Can you maintain financial stability during your divorce?

Because you and your spouse have decided to pursue a divorce in Texas, you are now faced with the task of recreating your life as an independent person. Sometimes, this can be quite a challenge, especially if you were married for a significant period of time. As you start to make changes, you should be watchful to protect your finances. The slightest misstep or irrational decision could leave you financially strapped and struggling to make ends meet. Fortunately, there are things you can do to stay financially stable during your divorce. 

As soon as you and your spouse have made the decision to divorce, you should immediately begin monitoring how much you spend and cutting down on spending where it is not necessary. According to USA Today, some of the other things you should be doing include the following:

  • Build up your credit score by paying off debt when you are able to. You may also consider applying for a new credit account to establish your credit and give yourself a good chance at being able to get a loan should you need one. 
  • Track all of your spending and keep valuable financial documents organized and in a safe place. They should be easily accessible for reference throughout the process of your divorce.
  • Rely on the help of professionals who have experience in helping people who are getting divorced to stay financially secure. 

WNBA player to pay one-time, $400,000 alimony payment

For divorcing couples in Texas, the stress of making important decisions about their future can often be overwhelming. One of the common topics that needs to be discussed and settled is alimony. This is when one of the spouses is required to pay so much money to the other spouse to aid in financial obligations. Often, the paying spouse is the person who has made the most money and is in more of a "stable" position. While couples can opt not to require each other to pay alimony at all, there are many times when courts require this payment to be made. 

A current WNBA player for the Los Angeles Sparks has recently divorced from her husband who is a former player for Duke University. The couple shares custody of their 8-year-old daughter. As part of the agreements made during the course of their divorce, the couple decided not to require each other to pay child support. Additionally, the two-time WNBA MVP has been required by the courts to pay $400,000 to her former husband for alimony. This payment is a one-time charge and will not be required again. During the divorce, the WNBA star's former husband requested that she pay alimony. 

Fighting with a spouse before divorce

Couples decide to end their marriage for many different reasons, from infidelity to incompatibility. In some instances, a marriage is brought to an end due to relentless fighting or a single incident that left one party emotionally scarred. Moreover, fighting may also take place once a person informs their spouse of their plans to file for divorce, during the process of divorce, or after a marriage has already come to an end. With regard to fights and divorce issues, it is important to know your rights and move forward cautiously.

There are a myriad of stressors when it comes to family law, from a heated custody dispute to disagreements over the way that marital property is split up. If you are a parent, for example, and your child’s other parent is posting threats on the internet or leaving threatening messages, it may be a good idea to inform the court of this behavior. Divorce can bring up very strong emotions in people, such as intense anger and depression, so it is crucial to work through these issues in a methodical manner.

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