As a Colleyville divorce lawyer, we are often asked, “What should I do before I file for divorce?” Likewise, if you feel like your spouse is about to file for divorce, you may be asking “What can and should I be doing to be properly prepared for a divorce?” Furthermore, “What is legal?”
WHAT YOU SHOULD BE DOING:
So what should you do, if you know that a divorce is possible? Consider the following
1.Think about Moving Valuables.
As long as you are not under any court orders that state otherwise and you are not committing fraud, you are entitled to protect your property by moving things like keepsakes and other irreplaceable things to a place where they can’t be destroyed. Whether you should move money and other assets is a tougher call. You may be legally entitled to do so, but you may create a problem that you otherwise don’t have. On the other hand, if you don’t make sure that you can survive, if your spouse moves, disposes of, or hides everything that he or she has access to, you may regret it later. This subject is a good one to get specific legal advice on from a good attorney that you can trust.
2. Check for Spyware on all your Devices (Cell phone, iPad, etc).
In this day and age, if anyone has had access to your computer, cell phone, iPad, etc. he or she can download software that will allow him or her to know everything that you are doing on your devise or computer. What that means is that changing passwords after the Spyware has been loaded won’t do any good to keep your spouse from knowing everything you and your attorney say to each other. So, if you believe that a divorce is on the way, a good first step to think about is getting all of your devices to a computer expert to have them checked for Spyware.
3. Change Passwords on all Your Devices.
Don’t get confused by thinking that changing passwords is useless. Changing passwords on anything and everything is a great step. Before you do though, make sure you prepare to do it right by getting a password keeper set up on a device that you know is secure. Then, set up strong, unique passwords for every account and device that you have. And remember that if your spouse has spyware, than changing your passwords may not amount to much.
4. Get Records of all of your Assets.
Getting and keeping good records is great advice regardless of whether you are going through a divorce or not, but especially for someone who is about to go through a divorce. Keep in mind that “all your assets” means everything, regardless of whose name is on it. Get copies of all records for all accounts, whether they are a checking account, savings account, money market account, investment account, CD, 401(k), IRA, or other. Get all records for any and all pensions. Make a list of all significant property that you or your spouse have any ownership interest in. Take photos of everything that matters, including collectibles, guns, coins, art, etc. Get records of any safe deposit box or storage facility. Get records of everything, and if you can’t get records of everything, get records of everything that you can.
5. Stop posting things on Social Media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Etc.).
Social Media posting may be the single worst thing that people do in divorce. Nothing good can come of it, and plenty of bad can. So stop. You have no right to privacy in a divorce with respect to things that you’ve posted, whether publicly or just to your close friends. Whether you can delete things that you have already posted is a matter of when you do it, why you do it, and what it is. The law is clear, however, that if are in a divorce and you delete postings in an effort to destroy evidence that could be used against you, you are committing spoliation and possibly obstruction of justice – both of which are bad.
For more information or questions regarding a possible divorce, call Kate Stone at 817-329-7737 for a confidential consultation with an experienced Colleyville Divorce Lawyer.