It’s estimated that 40% to 50% of marriages end in divorce. This could happen for many reasons, like getting married too young, cheating, abuse, or falling out of love.

No matter why a marriage ends, the decision to divorce is usually emotional. Jumping into the divorce process without being fully prepared for what is to come can lead to several serious and potentially expensive mistakes that can be avoided with the right preparation.

Which are these mistakes? Here they are: 

Moving too fast

Most people don’t decide to get a divorce all at once. Instead, they ask questions like, “Is this marriage working?” Is there any way to improve it? Am I done? What would divorce be like? What would life be like after a breakup? Do I want this? We call this the time of not knowing what to do.

But many people hire divorce lawyers to file divorce papers before they’re sure they want to split up. They think they can start the process and keep thinking about it. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case. 

But if you file divorce papers, the court will set deadlines, the other side’s lawyer will ask for pre-trial discovery, and you will have to go to court. 

Your attorney will have to respond to all of these, which will cost money, while you think about it and decide.

Filing for divorce is a big decision, and once the wheels are in motion, you can’t go back and change your mind. Cases can be dropped if both sides agree, but only after many unnecessary fees have been paid. 

To stay safe and avoid wasting too much money, don’t be in a hurry to file for a divorce if you haven’t decided to proceed.

 If it will help, talk to a professional like a divorce counselor or a health care worker. It’s best that you let the time of not knowing what to do pass before you start the divorce process.

Being disorganized

Getting organized is crucial before you hit the “start” button on the divorce process. If you don’t, it can be and usually is costly in terms of legal fees and the outcome. 

Preparing ahead of time is one of the most important and valuable things you can do for yourself.

That means you need to prepare yourself emotionally and gather and organize your financial information and documents. 

What did the couple get while they were married? Do both parties have a right to all of those assets? Will one partner have to pay for the other, and if so, what’s fair? If there are children, how much and for how long will they have to pay child support? If the financial picture is unclear, some assets are hidden, or all of them are unknown, this process can become unstable, long, and cost more than needed. 

You can also not know about some or all marital assets and have limited access to the information. This means it will take longer to find and value the assets, leading to extra fees and costs.

To avoid all this, ensure you have everything you need before you start the formal divorce process. Get help from the best divorce lawyers Fairfax VA or other professionals if you need it, but having your financial documents and information in order ahead of time can save you a lot of money in fees and usually leads to better results.

Don’t hire just anyone when hiring someone to help you through the process. Think about whether you feel at ease talking to this person. Do you think they understand what you want to accomplish? 

Will they help your process go as smoothly as possible? Or will you fight with this person the whole time against your team? Hire the person that you feel will be the right fit for you.