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Gathering paperwork an important part of divorce proceeding

Marriage counseling is effective for working through marriage problems for some couples in Texas. However, it is not effective for other couples. When divorce is unavoidable, a few tips may help with preparing for it as soon as possible.

First, gathering documentation is an important step early on. Financial records are critical because they provide valuable information about the financial health of the marriage. Gathering such documents may be time consuming and tedious, so starting early is essential. These documents include savings and checking account statements, retirement account statements, loan ledgers and even investment account statements. Other relevant documents include income tax returns, recent pay stubs and credit card statements from the past year.

In an amicable divorce, information is usually exchanged freely. However, when the situation is adversarial, one of the spouses may not release financial documents or other important documents unless they are legally required to do so. This is particularly likely if one of the spouses was in charge of the household's finances.

Even when relations seem to be cordial at the start of a divorce proceeding in Texas, rough patches are likely down the road. This is especially true if many assets, or high-value assets, have to be divided as part of the proceeding. An attorney can provide guidance with obtaining all of the financial documents needed as quickly as possible. He or she can then fight for a client's fair share of assets, either at the negotiation table or in the courtroom depending on the circumstances surrounding the divorce.

Source: azcentral.com, "7 ways to ready your finances for divorce", Elizabeth Renter, May 31, 2017

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