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How to handle an out-of-the-blue divorce filing

Ask anyone in Maryland what his or her feelings are about divorce, and the answer is likely to be as unique as the individuals who respond. No two people share the exact same approach to the subject, but many feel confident that the issue is a moot point within their own lives. When an individual is happy within his or her own marriage, the concept of divorce seems like a purely theoretical matter.

This may be how many people think about divorce, but studies show that the reality is quite different. Many spouses feel secure within their marriage, and are convinced that their union will never be subject to divorce. However, research shows that as many as 60 percent of divorce cases involve at least one partner who ranked their marriage as "low conflict" before divorce was initiated. It is important to understand that divorce is a two-way street and that it only takes one party to bring a marriage to a close.  

Spouses who are blindsided by the news that their partner is seeking divorce have a unique set of needs. They must immediately begin to consider their legal options, as their partner has likely already gone a considerable way down that path. A great many decisions must be made in the weeks and months that follow a divorce filing, and spouses who were unaware that their marriage was in trouble will have some catching up to do.

One of the most important steps that a blindsided spouse can do is to secure legal counsel immediately. While it may take some time to come to terms with the emotional side of an unexpected divorce, there are legal matters that must be attended to right away. Many Maryland spouses will find it helpful to hire a financial advisor to assist in structuring a property division strategy, as well as working out a post-divorce budget plan. By leaning on the wisdom of these trusted professionals, it is possible to reach a settlement that is fair, which should be the ultimate goal of any divorce.

Source: newsok.com, "Why do happy marriages end in divorce?", Wendy Jessen, Nov. 14, 2015

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