Should I Get a Divorce? The Divorce Checklist

8th December 2022

Knowing the right time to end a marriage can seem like an impossible task. How can you know if you're falling out of love or if your relationship has finally run its course? 

You'd think that simply searching for the phrase "Should I get a divorce" would be a sure-enough sign, but things aren't that simple. Deciding on divorce is a deeply personal decision that affects people physically, emotionally, and spiritually. 

It's important to evaluate your situation, and the easiest way to do this is to look at a divorce checklist. If you want a final answer to your "how to know if I should get a divorce" question, don't seriously consider anything until you evaluate the following areas of your life. 

Take a Deep Dive Into Finances 

You don't need to be told that the cost of divorce can be enough to make people think twice about ending their marriage. Even though it's important to think about the actual cost of the divorce itself, it's even more critical to think about how much you both stand to lose. 

Shared assets like homes, vehicles, businesses, retirement plans, and investments will need to be divided up. Did one spouse stay at home with the kids while the other worked full-time? Now you'll have to consider alimony on top of child support and whether your soon-to-be ex can actually afford to pay

Finances can complicate a divorce. If you have concerns about money, consider talking to a financial planner along with a lawyer. 

Evaluate What You've Done 

Are you ready to fight for this marriage? Is your spouse the one fighting, and you're ready to tap out? Are the both of you tired and just want things to end? 

Your willingness to work on things should be a significant factor in ending your marriage. Before you panic over the thought of divorce, think about what you've done to try to salvage things and whether you want that work to continue. 

Some people go to individual and couple's therapy to work on their issues. You may cut down on time at the office or with friends to focus on each other. Some people may focus on working on themselves so they can be the partner their spouse deserves. 

It's important to note that there's no shame in admitting that you've done all you can or that you just don't want to work to save things. Sometimes relationships run their course, and it's best to focus on making an amicable separation for everyone involved. 

Think About Children 

Children are a huge factor when you decide on whether or not to divorce. Regardless of how you and your ex decide custody, it's important to keep in mind that children can affect alimony, support payments, and even whether or not you move for a job.

There are a lot of myths about children and divorce. Some think that it's best to get divorced when kids are young so they won't remember it. Others assume that a two-parent household is best even if the parents can't get along. 

The truth is that it can be difficult to gauge how children will react. Some may be indifferent, others may be heartbroken. You won't be able to control their emotions, but you can help them process what's happening.

Getting your child into therapy soon rather than later can help them process your divorce. It could also reflect well on your parenting abilities in court. 

Are you in a situation where you're concerned about your child's safety if your spouse were to have custody? Do you have questions about how to handle family court and get the best outcome for your family? Don't be afraid to reach out to a family attorney with experience in the area. 

Spend Time With Yourself 

When was the last happy or positive interaction you've had with your spouse? Do you feel like you can still trust them and rely on them as partners and parents? Are you still attracted to them and want to be in a relationship with them? 

Take a moment to flip those questions and think about how your spouse would answer. If you feel comfortable, consider asking them these questions so you can hear their answers. 

Marriage is the foundation of families all across Australia. Despite that, it's still a contract between two people that can end if things aren't working out. 

Now isn't the time for wistful thinking or grand gestures. You and your spouse need to be honest about how you're both feeling if you want the answer to your question. 

Envision the Future 

When you think about your life post-divorce, what images come to mind? People's minds tend to jump to two different scenarios, and both of them tend to be far from the truth. 

Some people imagine living a carefree life filled with travel and romance. Others envision a lonely life in a small apartment while they pine for what they had. It's easy to think about life in extremes, but it's important to be realistic about what your life will look like after you end your marriage. 

Think about where you'd live or if your professional life would be any different. Consider what entering the dating pool would look like and how you'd find a spouse that fits both your and your children's lives. 

Take factors like money, friendship, and life goals into consideration. Life post-divorce can be great, but only if you put in the effort to plan. 

Should I Get a Divorce: The Ultimate Answer

The answer to the should I get a divorce question is going to depend on a lot of things. Some people may find that they want to give their marriage a second chance. They may not have the money or strength to go through a divorce. Others are ready to end things now and wish they had got things going sooner. 

Regardless of what you decide, know that everyone has options when it comes to their marriage. If you're unsure of what you can do, we're here to help. You can get started for free today using our online systems which uses artificial intelligence to provide personalised and helpful advice 

A checklist for divorce infographic

Please note the contents of this post is information only and not legal advice. 
If you require legal advice it is best to contact one of our lawyers who can review your particular circumstances and then provide tailored advice according to your needs.

Copyright © 2024 Koolik & Associates Lawyers. Website Powered by Oncord