When to Tell Your Spouse You Want a Divorce in NY
Deciding you want to get a divorce is only the first part of the process of ending your marriage. A decision of this magnitude should not be taken lightly and should not be “sprung” on your spouse without careful consideration. Announcing to your spouse that you want to divorce doesn’t necessarily have to come immediately. In some cases, it’s more beneficial to wait until you consider all the possible ramifications. Here’s why.
5 Reasons You May Want to Wait to Get a Divorce in NY
#1. Your Spouse Is Abusive
If you are a victim of domestic violence, you need an exit strategy that reduces the risk of retaliation against you for leaving. More domestic violence victims are able to leave successfully when they plan ahead for where they will go and how they will get support.
Statistically, the most dangerous time for a domestic violence victim is immediately after their abuser learns of their intent to end the relationship. Make sure you are in a safe location and anything important to you, like your pets or valuable belongings, are also in a safe place before your spouse has any knowledge of your intent to get a divorce.
#2. Your Spouse Carries Your Health Insurance
If your spouse is the one who provides your health insurance through their job, you may want to wait until you have alternative coverage lined up before filing for a divorce. This is especially true if you have a chronic illness or health conditions that require ongoing or emergency medical care.
For example, if your spouse becomes angry at you for wanting a divorce and quits their job to get back at you, you could be left without the medical coverage you need. It may benefit you more to get backup coverage in place before announcing your intentions if your spouse provides critical resources like health insurance, income, transportation, etc.
#3. You Have Children Together
Divorce is extra tough on kids. It’s important that you take some time to figure out how you will tell your children about the divorce in an age-appropriate way and learn what you can do to best support them throughout the process of dissolving your marriage. You may want to consider getting resources like counseling in place before letting your children know that you will be ending your relationship with their other parent.
Child custody and child support issues are also a consideration to make when kids are involved. Depending on your situation, you may want to change jobs or get mental health treatment before pulling the trigger on your divorce. For example, if you struggle with drugs and alcohol, this could put your chances of getting custody of your children at risk. But having gotten treatment for these issues before even filing for a divorce can help tremendously.
#4. You Need Time to Get a Job
Many spouses enter a marriage and end up relying on their significant other to provide financially for the family while you take care of the children and the household. Whether you stayed home to take care of children or made sacrifices in your own career for your spouse’s benefit, you may be at an extreme financial disadvantage if you were to file for divorce immediately upon deciding you wanted to separate.
Instead, consider what you might be able to do to sharpen your skills or to get a new job before you announce your divorce. Consider giving yourself enough time to expand your education or skills and to put some money back into savings. If your spouse decides to cut you off financially right away, this gives you something to fall back on.
#5. You Think There’s a Chance for Reconciliation
If you believe you and your spouse might be able to reconcile or you are interested in marriage counseling before making the final decision to end your relationship, you may want to consider filing for a legal separation before getting a divorce. This allows you to remain married on paper but gives you the freedom to move forward.
For example, if you need to stay on your spouse’s insurance, a legal separation would afford you the independence you want but would allow you to remain under their coverage for the duration of the separation or until you decided to take the last step to get a divorce.
Consult an Experienced Divorce Attorney Before Announcing Your Divorce
Hornberger Verbitsky, P.C. is a veteran Long Island divorce law firm. Book a consultation for comprehensive legal assistance by dialing 631-923-1910 or fill out the short form on this page.
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