Five Mistakes to Avoid When Divorcing in Washington
Many people get divorced. The Washington State Department of Health reports that approximately 23,500 married couples file for divorce in the state each year. As common as divorce is, that does not make going through one any less challenging. In fact, people tend to make the same mistakes over and over again in the divorce process. Our Spokane divorce lawyers highlight five of the most common mistakes that you should avoid when ending a marriage in Washington.
1. Taking an Overly Combative Approach
As a general rule, most people enter the divorce process looking for a low-conflict, cost effective solution. In fact, more than 95% of divorces are finalized outside of litigation. Taking an overly combative approach at the outset can actually make it harder to reach a successful resolution. While you may be one of the unlucky people who is stuck dealing with a spouse who simply refuses to negotiate in good faith, it is best to at least try to work towards an amicable settlement.
2. Refusing to Participate in the Process at All
Washington is a no-fault divorce state. A divorce can be sought on the grounds that the marriage is irretrievably broken. The testimony of a single spouse is sufficient to justify a no-fault divorce. In other words, the divorce will go forward whether or not both parties engage in the process. Refusing to participate or engage in good faith will only make things more difficult—it could even cost you certain rights.
3. Not Knowing Your Rights and Responsibilities Under Washington Law
Another one of the common divorce mistakes in Spokane is that people are not aware of their rights and responsibilities under state law. If you are preparing to end a marriage, you should consult with a family lawyer who can help you understand the law. Among other things, this may include:
- Washington’s community property statute for asset distribution;
- Washington’s alimony/spousal support laws;
- Washington’s best interests of the child standard for custody/visitation;
- Washington’s guidelines for child support.
4. Letting Emotions Overcome Logic
The end of a romantic relationship is often fraught with emotions. Even more so in a divorce. Your emotions matter. At the same time, letting emotions overcome logic can cause problems for you in a divorce case. At the end of the day, the divorce process is about separating financial and legal affairs so that you and your family are in the best position to move forward.
5. Waiting Too Long to Seek Professional Representation
You do not have to go through a divorce alone. Professional guidance and support is available. One of the best steps that you can take to ensure that you avoid making a serious legal, financial, or logistical mistake is to consult with a Spokane, WA divorce lawyer as early as possible in the process. Your attorney will help you navigate your divorce and other related family law matters.
Get Help From a Divorce Attorney in Spokane, WA
At Hodgson Law Office, our Spokane divorce lawyers are compassionate, solutions-centered advocates for clients. We will protect your best interests. Contact our family law firm today to arrange a strictly confidential case evaluation. With a law office located in the heart of Spokane, we are well-positioned to provide divorce representation throughout the surrounding area, including in Spokane Valley, Pullman, Moses Lake, Cheney, Mead, Town and Country, and Airway Heights.