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5 Ways to Tell People You’re Getting a Divorce

We all want to communicate with others, it’s one of the most basic of human needs. This is especially true in times of divorce. Wanting to communicate with people and knowing how to do it is often where problems can occur. 

In today’s world, there are more ways to communicate your divorce announcement than ever before.

Facebook

For almost anyone on earth that has access to a computer, Facebook is the dominant force in Social Media. It makes sense that you might be contemplating announcing your divorce on Facebook.  You can reach hundreds or even thousands of people with a single post. Facebook offers a number of approaches. There’s the subtle way, simply changing your relationship status from married to single, divorced or its complicated.

The downside of doing this is that your status change could trigger a barrage of messages and comments from concerned friends and family.

If you do announce your divorce like the one mentioned above, posting that on Facebook can actually be reasonably productive. You will break the news to a lot of people at one time. However, the best way to announce this kind of thing on Facebook is to prepare a joint statement with your spouse. Even with divorce, there’s strength in presenting a united front. If that’s not possible, you can always post the news alone.

Just remember one thing: Everything you post on Facebook can be used against you in court. So if you’re not doing a joint statement, keep your post short, simple and non offensive!

Mass Email

A more private alternative than social media, email is a good way to let people far and wide know the news.  It also controls WHO knows, since you’ll control who gets the email. But, this approach also has its downsides.

First, if you send a mass email to a lot of people at once through your regular email you might get tagged for spam.  That means that lots of people won’t see it.

Of course, you could send individual (and personalized) emails to everyone you know. The biggest downside to this is that custom crafting all those emails can be tiring. The final problem is that, as with Facebook, you’re likely to get a responses you’re not ready for.

Divorce Announcements

Much Like wedding announcements, divorce announcements are a thing and they are a formal way to let your friends and family know about your new development.  These should ONLY be used once your divorce is final and should NOT be used until such time.

Greeting card universe  features a number of divorce announcements.  If you do decide to send divorce announcements though, use caution. While most of them seem funny, a great deal of them border on bad taste. So if your intended recipients are easily offended, this may not be the best way to break the news to them.

Christmas Cards

Just like with Facebook, there’s two schools of thought on this way of announcing your divorce.

If you’re trying to be subtle, you can include a family photo of just you and your kids in your Christmas card.  Simply sign the card with just your name and your kids’ names. Most people can read between the lines, although some may think your spouse died.

If you choose to be more forthcoming you can always include a statement in your card about what happened this year with your family and include the announcement of the divorce in that.

This approach isn’t for everyone but it could cut down on the emails and comments you might face using social media.

Face to Face

There’s no more personal way to communicate but it’s also one of the hardest ways. It’s emotional and time consuming. When you are first starting your divorce journey, having one-on-one conversations about your divorce with anyone can be extremely challenging.

However, face to face conversations are the best way to break the news of your divorce to those who are close to you. Just make sure you keep it positive and productive.

You also need to consider the timing of the conversation. If you open up to people about your divorce too soon, you’re either going to be a sobbing mess or you’re going to be mad enough to spit nails. Your emotions are too raw for you to be anything else.

Being emotional is okay if the people you are talking to are your closest friends and family. If you’re trying to have a face to face conversation with anyone else, it’s probably best to wait until your emotions have settled down and you can talk about your divorce without becoming too emotional.  

If you’re facing the prospect of divorce call the attorneys at Harmon and Gorove today and schedule a free consultation to find out what your options are for an uncontested divorce.  

Ending your Marriage: 7 Steps to Prepare for Divorce

Deal with Your Emotions

Often, emotion is the driving force behind divorce.  Emotions drive every disagreement, drive people to fight in court and cause them to destroy what could otherwise be an amicable process.  When your emotions spin out of control, you’re much more likely to have a contested divorce. That said, controlling your emotions doesn’t mean you have to act like a robot or a zombie, divorce IS emotional and sometimes you’re going to break down. However, the more you keep your emotions under control the less drama you’ll experience in your divorce. One of the best things you can do in order to prepare yourself emotionally for a divorce is to see a therapist or join a support group as soon as possible.  This will allow you to have an emotional support system in place before you begin to prepare for divorce.

Get Organized & Collect Documents.

The key to a relatively easy divorce process is being organized.  You’ll need a process a small mountain of paperwork during the process.  You may need tax returns, W-2s, pay stubs, credit card statements, bank account statements.  Organizing the documents in a cohesive way is one of the biggest things you can do to make the process easier and save yourself time and money.   Beyond that, having it done before you start your divorce will allow you to focus on one LESS thing during the divorce in addition to making the process go faster.

Understand Your Finances.

If you don’t want to be on the streets or living with your parents after a divorce, you need to understand your financial situation before you start the process. That means you need to get comfortable with exactly how much you will need to survive after the divorce.  You can’t end your marriage and divide up your property without knowing how much you have and how much you owe. You can’t survive the aftermath of a divorce without knowing how much you’ve got coming in and going out after everything is said and done.

Make A Financial Plan.

Understand your financial situation is the first step, then you need to make a plan for how you’ll live after the divorce.  If you’ve been separated for a long time, you likely have a good idea about what your life will be like after divorce, however, if you’re still sharing expenses, you’re probably in for a rude awakening. Before you get divorced you have to make sure that you will have the ability to bring in enough money to live and pay all of your bills once your divorce is over, otherwise you may be faced with bankruptcy.

Get an Idea of Who you need on your Team.

You don’t have to go through the divorce alone but to prepare for divorce you need to think about who you will need to help you.  Ending a marriage is challenging and extremely complicated. Some of the people you may need to consider having at your disposal beyond a good attorney is a financial adviser, a therapist, even a good realtor isn’t a bad idea if you’re having to sell a home.  You also need to line up family and friends. You’ll need their support during this process.

Set Realistic Goals.

Most people start to prepare for divorce without ever knowing what they want.  Obviously, you want to be done with your marriage, but there’s more to divorce than that.   If you don’t ask yourself the question of “what do you want”, and invest time finding the right answer, you have very little chance of ending up happy once your divorce is over.

The sooner you can set goals for your divorce, the more likely you are to achieve them. But, before you commit to pursuing a goal, you also have to make sure that it’s realistic.   

Make Peace.

Most people don’t get married thinking the day will come where their marriage will end in divorce.  Divorce may be against every fiber of your being, but unfortunately, it happens. It doesn’t make you or your spouse a bad person, it doesn’t make you wrong or a failure.  The only thing divorce means is that your marriage didn’t work. There is a lot of baggage that come with divorce. It churns up bad feelings and emotions that can cause you trouble down the road.  You need to make peace with the process of getting a divorce so that you can come out healthy and happy.

If you feel that divorce is something that is right for you, contact the attorneys at Harmon and Gorove today to schedule a time to discuss your uncontested divorce, free of charge.  

Social Media and Divorce

Social media has changed the world in just a few short years.  The first real Social Media sites debuted in 2002 and 2003 with the biggest one of them all, Facebook, debuting in 2004.  Social Media has had a significant role in changing the world we live in and making our lives more connected. Sometimes these social media sites have made our lives better and sometimes they’ve made them much worse.  It allows us to connect to old friends and keep in touch with long distance relatives. Social Media has also had many negative effects. It has led to countless extra-marital affairs, numerous divorces both uncontested and contested.  33% of all divorce filings in 2011 mentioned the word Facebook and certainly the number of divorces has grown by leaps and bounds since then with the advent of even more social media sites and messaging apps.  Without knowing the state of your relationship, we can’t say for sure that social media can be the downfall of your marriage but it most decidedly has the ability to cause substantial problems.  Even an amicable, uncontested divorce can go off the rails when one party of another sees pictures of the other spouse dating someone new, spending money, partying or acting carefree. Divorce, as we all know, is extremely trying on one’s emotions, even for people who feel that’s their only option. Even if someone’s ready to move in with their life, it doesn’t mean that they don’t still have feelings for their soon to be ex.

At one point or another, most couples had some good times and when they see their spouse with their arms wrapped around a date or a new partner, it breaks their heart, quickly turning feelings of sadness into jealousy, anger and spite.

What’s going on in your situation?

Many people ask, “Should I stay off Social Media during my divorce?

The answer depends on your individual situation:

  1. Do you use social media every day for a job or other business purpose?
  2. Is your spouse on social media?
  3. Are your mutual friends and family members on social media

If a post on Social Media that could upset your soon to be ex is likely to be seen by them or shown to them by someone else during the divorce proceeding, it would be in your best interest to stay off social media until your divorce is complete.  If you must use social media, it’s in your best interest to not comment, post or like anything that could upset the other party.

In our experience, it’s best to be cautious and this often means to abstain from Social Media during your divorce. If this sounds too difficult, then don’t post anything that you wouldn’t want your spouse or their attorney to see.

During your divorce, we recommend avoiding the following posts at all costs:

  • Pictures of you partying.
  • Pictures of you drinking alcohol or using drugs.
  • Pictures of an unusual purchase like a new car or a lavish vacation.
  • Pictures of you with what could be construed as “dates” or romantic partners.

And last but certainly not least:

Rants about your spouse or divorce.

Social media can be a lot of fun and a great way to distract yourself from your divorce, but don’t forget to post responsibly. You don’t want to say or do anything that can anger or upset your spouse to the point where a cheap, uncontested divorce turns into a full-blown divorce battle. We say this because it happens all the time to spouses amid divorce, and it’s entirely preventable.

If you find yourself needing the counsel of a competent and compassionate attorney to handle your uncontested divorce, please give us a call today to schedule your free, no obligation consultation.  The attorneys at Harmon and Gorove have decades of experience in handling uncontested divorces in ways that KEEP them uncontested.   

 

Resuming Your Maiden Name after Divorce

Going back to your maiden name after a divorce is a deeply personal choice.  Many people wonder if it’s the right thing to do or not. Truly, it’s up to you. People who decide to return to their maiden name or keep their married name always have a reason as to why.  Here’s some of the common reasons people choose to go back to their maiden name or keep their married name.

REASONS WOMEN GO BACK TO THEIR MAIDEN NAME

Some women choose to return to their maiden name because they like it better. Sometimes it just sounds better on the tongue or when it’s read. Cauthen or Cheever? Williams or Willis? Occasionally the maiden name just looks much better on paper.

Sometimes marriages end poorly.  Whether it just didn’t work out or was physically abusive, many women are eager to return to their maiden names because they don’t want the reminder of a painful past. Even if their maiden name is less appealing, they may be in a hurry to go back to quickly erase all evidence of their abusive spouse from their home.  Sometimes going back to your maiden name is all about freedom and starting anew. Women feel as if going back to their life before their failed marriage will make them feel whole again.

REASONS WOMEN KEEP A MARRIED NAME

Some women who have become mothers choose to retain their married names because they want to have the same last name as their children.  Many may also not want to have to deal with a statements and questions like, “Oh, you’re divorced” or “Why do you have a different last name than Billy or Suzie?” Sometimes, the choice to keep a married name may be made because you are known professionally by that name. For example, if a woman has built her whole career or her brand around her married last name, it may be too costly or risky to make the switch. Finally, the hassle of a name change alone can be the driving force behind staying put for some women, especially if they really don’t mind keeping their married name.  If you’re a woman who’s getting a divorce in Georgia and you wish to go back to your maiden name, the attorneys at Harmon and Gorove can explain how to do that as a part of your divorce before the divorce is finalized. If you need to speak with an attorney regarding the prospect of uncontested divorce please call our office today to schedule a free consultation with our experienced team of lawyers.

 

The Rings, After the Divorce

There are a lot of decisions that have to be made when a couple decides to divorce.  There are marital debts and the division of assets that must be discussed and negotiated.  What do we do with the wedding videos, pictures and other momentos? Do I hold on to the dress? Who gets the dog and who gets the cat?  I want the sofa and you want the bed. One of the things that often gets overlooked is what to do with the rings. The wedding rings hold a great deal of symbolism and quite possibly, monetary value.  

There are lots of options for dealing with now unwanted wedding rings and lots of questions as well.  Does the woman automatically hand her wedding rings back to her soon to be ex considering that he gave it to them.  Do exes keep the rings to give to their children one day when they get married? Do they go down to the nearest pawn shop or jewelry store and ry to get as much monetary value from them as possible.  Honestly, there’s no one right answer. What works for you may not be what someone else does and you have to make your own decision based on your personal feelings.

All things considered, what are my options?

The feelings you have about your wedding rings are very personal.  Some people may look back and remember, “the good times” in the relationship.  Some people, especially those with children may want to hold on to the ring(s) to pass down to children due to sentimental value.  On the other hand, if your marriage was tumultuous, stressful or even abusive, you may have no desire whatsoever to hold on to a reminder of just how tough things were.  

Here are some possible options for what to do with your rings:

  • You can always give the ring back to your spouse.
  • You may save the rings and give them to your children when they decide to get married.
  • You can sell the rings and use the money to make some positive steps like paying off debt, investing in yourself, or buying something special.
  • You can have the ring melted down and used to created a new piece of jewelry.
  • You can sell the rings and donate the money to charity, especially if you were in an abusive relationship.

Even if the rings remind you of a bad marriage, it doesn’t mean you should toss them into the nearest body of water. They’re likely worth some money, so it’s more productive to sell them and use the money for something positive.

If you find your marriage is struggling and you and your spouse have decided to end it, give the attorneys at Harmon and Gorove a call today to discuss how we can help you file an uncontested divorce to end your marriage in an amicable and cost effective way.  

Bankruptcy and Divorce: They often go hand in hand

Financial problems are often a source of major problems in a marriage. Many couples in Georgia have found themselves facing the prospect of divorce at least in part due to unsustainable debt or different spending habits. Many couples choose to file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy in an effort to save their marriages from divorce.  Unfortunately, this decision doesn’t always end up working out and leaves divorce as the only option. Divorce can leave the parties wondering how their bankruptcy will be impacted.

There are several factors that play into the options for people facing divorce in this situation. Bankrate states, some people may be able to convert their Chapter 13 case to a Chapter 7. Another important thing to consider when looking at your options is whether the case was filed as a joint case or a single case.

There is a different set of circumstances for those who did not begin their bankruptcy proceedings before deciding to get divorced.  Those people will need to look at which type of bankruptcy plan is best for them according to a blog called My Horizon Today. The types of debt, the new incomes of the divorcing parties and the expenses incurred by new living situations are just some of the factors that will contribute to this decision.

Another important thing to think about during this time is how well the divorcing couples are able to work together to achieve their financial goals. If the divorce is not amicable and the former spouses are unable to communicate, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy might not be the best idea. However, for divorced couples who can get along and communicate, this type of plan may be the best thing for them even though they would likely have to communicate and work together through the 3 to 5 year bankruptcy term.

If you find yourself facing debt problems that could potentially lead you to divorce or you are divorcing and find your new financial reality untenable, contact the compassionate attorneys at Harmon and Gorove. We offer same day appointments and free consultation so we can show you how we can help you achieve a new level of financial freedom and get your life back on track.