How Can I Protect My Rights as a Stay-At-Home Parent During a Divorce?
A divorce can be tough on anyone, but it can be especially stressful for a stay-at-home parent who has spent all of their time and energy taking care of their family. You have fewer resources to rely on than your spouse does and it is only natural to be worried about what happens next. Fortunately, there are some things that you can do to prepare for a divorce and protect yourself. Our experienced Chatham divorce attorneys can help you.
What Are the Divorce Options for a Stay-At-Home Parent With Less Resources?
Any stay-at-home parent would be right to be afraid of going to court and getting a divorce. Litigation is often the most expensive way to settle a divorce. You may worry that you would not be able to afford a lawyer and that this would put you at a disadvantage. Fortunately, there are some other options that can work better when one spouse is a stay-at-home parent. We can recommend:
Mediation: Both spouses can sit down with a third party and discuss things like property division and child visitation schedules. If couples can stay civil and work together, mediation can make the divorce process far less expensive. We also should note that our firm’s lawyers are qualified mediators.
Collaborative divorce: You, your spouse, and lawyers hired specifically for this type of divorce work to find a settlement that works for everyone. You can go over things like spousal support, child visitation, and property division, and then you can reach an agreement.
Spouse-funded litigation: If you absolutely must go to court, your spouse can be ordered to pay your legal fees if you request it. It simply is not fair for one partner to have a lawyer while the other does without, so a judge can grant your request and make the playing field even.
What Should a Stay-At-Home Parent Do When They Expect a Divorce?
If you are a stay-at-home parent and you expect that you will be served with divorce papers, you should:
- Gather your own important documents, like your social security card and identification
- Gather any of your financial documents
- Make copies of the family financial documents and become familiar with how money goes in and out of your household
- Inventory your personal and family possessions
How Can I Plan for My Future After the Divorce?
Now you need to begin preparing for your own financial future. This means reviewing your credit report and potentially getting a card of your very own. This also means thinking about how you could possibly enter the workforce if that becomes necessary. You should also consider what you will do about your living situation.
Talk to Our Legal Team
There is no reason for you to deal with all of this on your own. Contact Lazor Rantas, PC and set up a consultation. We can tell you more about your options and how we can help you protect your rights as a stay-at-home parent throughout this difficult process.