Preparing for Divorce

Prior to beginning your divorce alongside your divorce attorney, you’ll want to make sure you have all the documents he or she will need to be able to move forward. Here’s a list of what you should prepare to bring with you.

Important Documents for Divorce

Here’s a list of the documents you’ll want to bring along when you meet with your divorce attorney:

  • Tax returns
  • Documents proving your forms of income
  • Any documents that relate to marital debt, assets, property valuations

Organizing Your Documents

Since there is a lot to review, it might help to organize your documents. This will also give you a chance to review and gather as much information as possible to support your case if you end up going to court. Organizing them according to the following categories will make the necessary documents easy to find:

  • Income – this includes paycheck stubs (yours and your spouse’s), income returns for at least the last three years, anything that will help you establish both your net worth and your spouse’s.
  • Real Estate – this includes mortgage statements, or legal documents that show real estate owned either together, or separately.
  • Savings and Checking Accounts – this includes any and all bank statements from the past 2 years for accounts either held jointly or individually.
  • Life Insurance – this includes any current policies and related documents.
  • Debts – this includes an itemized list of all debts (your and your spouse’s), as well as any outstanding, debts such as credit cards, medical bills, or other loans.
  • Pension Funds – this includes statements for 401K plans, retirement funds, mutual funds, or IRAs
  • Automobiles – this includes titles and registration on all automobiles, as well as any information referring to outstanding debt owed on those vehicles.

Working with a Divorce Attorney

Having all these documents prepared prior to meeting with your attorney will help simplify the process, as they’ll be able to review all the documents and build your case should you need to go to court.

Source: Divorce Support, 8 Documents Your Divorce Attorney Will Need, 2014

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