While there is no easy time to get a divorce, couples often wait until after the holiday season to begin the divorce process. Though divorce rates actually appear to peak in March, the spike in divorces after the holidays has caused January to be unofficially dubbed “Divorce Month.” There are pros and cons to delaying the divorce process until January. A highly skilled divorce lawyer can discuss the potential benefits and drawbacks of each and guide you through every step of the divorce process.
What Are the Benefits of Waiting Until January to Divorce?
The following are examples of some of the main benefits of waiting until January to initiate a divorce, when the holidays are behind you:
- Fresh start: The new year is always an opportunity to reflect on the past and make a fresh start going forward. If you attempted to fix your marriage, but it is beyond repair, the new year is an opportunity to end a relationship that is no longer working so you can focus on the future.
- Less traumatic for the children: Announcing your divorce during the holidays may cause your children to associate the holidays with that bad news. By setting aside any negative feelings during the holidays to focus on the children, you can help maintain some normalcy.
- Financial benefits: Any income, bonuses, or other financial assets that you or your spouse accumulate after filing for divorce may be considered separate property. By waiting until January to file for divorce, any year-end bonuses and other assets obtained over the course of the year will be subject to the equitable distribution of property. In addition, if you file a joint tax return, you can resolve any year-end tax issues prior to filing for divorce.
- Time to plan: Waiting until January to file for divorce gives you some time to review your financial records, credit card balances, and other debts, and estimate how your marital assets will be distributed and how much spousal support you could be paid or be required to pay.
What Are the Disadvantages of a January Divorce?
When deciding whether to wait until the new year to file for divorce, keep in mind the following potential disadvantages:
- The decision could be reactionary: In some cases, it may not be ideal timing to file for divorce on the heels of the holidays when your judgment may be clouded by the stress of hectic holidays or the winter doldrums that people often experience due to cold weather and lack of sunshine. Make sure you are filing for the right reasons.
- You may not be ready to get a divorce: While you may be ready to end your relationship with your spouse, you may not be financially prepared for the divorce process. It is recommended that you review all financial records thoroughly and determine whether you are financially able to pay for the divorce.
Somerville Divorce Lawyers at Lepp, Mayrides & Eaton, LLC Can Assist Couples Who Are Divorcing in the New Year
The experienced Somerville divorce lawyers at Lepp, Mayrides & Eaton, LLC ensure their clients’ rights are protected, whether settlement is reached, or litigation is necessary. Call us at 908-800-7676 or contact us online to schedule a consultation.
Located in Somerville, New Jersey, our attorneys serve clients throughout Central New Jersey, including those in Somerset County, Hunterdon County, Warren County, Morris County, Mercer County, Monmouth County, Union County, and Middlesex County.