I was recently involved in a car accident. Unfortunately, since it was my first accident, I was scatter-brained and anxious. What I did not realize at the time was that the actions you take immediately after the accident can affect a personal injury case and the outcome of that case. I wanted to find a way to share my experiences and mistakes with other. Since the Internet is so popular, I figured this would be a great way to do so. While you likely aren't planning on being in an accident soon, if you are, hopefully you remember some of the tips I share on this website.
Are you going through a divorce? Has your spouse asked you to move out? If so, you may be tempted to comply with the request just to diffuse the situation. Staying in the family home during a divorce can be uncomfortable and tense for everyone involved. However, you may not want to immediately pack a bag and move out. Doing so could make the divorce process a little more difficult, especially if children are involved. Instead, you may want to take some time to make sure you have all your affairs in order. Here are three important steps you may want to take before you move out:
Gather important financial documents. Asset division is one of the most complicated components of divorce. You'll likely need a lot of documentation to show who earns what income, who pays which bills, and how certain assets are titled. You may need copies of investment statements, tax returns, property titles, and more. If you leave the house without this documentation, it may be difficult to gather later. If the divorce becomes contentious, your lawyer may need to get a court order to have your former spouse turn over copies of the documents. You can avoid that process by gathering copies of all your important documents before you leave.
Take pictures of valuable property. One of the biggest problems with moving out is that you will no longer be caring for your property firsthand. Your home, vehicles, and other valuable pieces of property will be in the hands of your former spouse. When the divorce is finalized, you may have to sell some of that property and split the proceeds. If the value of the property has deteriorated since you left because of poor care and maintenance, you'll want to have evidence of that. Take pictures of your home and other assets so you can demonstrate the property's condition at the time you left.
Consider your new home carefully. When children are involved, continuity is a big concern in the divorce process. Judges are often reluctant to do anything that would disrupt the children's normal routine. With that in mind, you may want to take your time to find a new home that isn't disruptive. For example, if you move to another school district, that may put you in a difficult spot to get primary custody. If your new home is significantly smaller and the kids will be forced to share rooms, that could also put you at a disadvantage. Don't just sign a lease and move out. Take the time to find the right home for your new situation.
For more information, talk to a divorce lawyer. Attorneys such as those at Begley Carlin & Mandio LLP can help you decide if you should move out and when is the best time to do so.