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Working together toward an amicable divorce

Avoiding emotional reactions is a key part of an amicable divorce. Once you and your partner agree to split, it’s important to remember that you’re still on the same team, working together to make that split a reality. It’s best to go into the proceedings with the mindset of getting to a divorce agreement quickly and fairly. 
 
Here are some suggestions for a smoother divorce process. 

Be careful with social media

It makes good sense to be mindful about anything posted to social media. Unfortunately it’s not just your posts that can end up being dissected by lawyers—posts by friends and family about you, your spouse, or your kids could end up in court. Social media posts about vacations or any other lavish spending could give the wrong appearance during a divorce. Any angry online rants run the same risk. Assume you’ll be judged by your online activities and be careful about what you post.

Be mindful of your money

Extravagant purchases or significant money movements—like clearing out a joint bank account—could be viewed negatively by a judge later. Don’t take more than your fair share, and document your spending. If possible, tell your spouse before moving any marital assets. 
 
If kids are in the picture, think ahead to what kind of costs can be expected, such as braces, summer camp, or college tuition. 

Be kind in interactions with your partner

Don’t say or do things you’ll regret later. Avoid engaging in angry arguments and try to work together toward a fair divorce. That’s not always possible—but that is what lawyers, counselors, and mediators can help you with.

Stay level-headed in the divorce courtroom

Focus on presenting reasonable solutions rather than trying to “win” the judge over. Also, don’t expect the judge to parse through every single grievance that accumulated during the marriage. Instead, align yourself with the judge’s forward-thinking mentality: Show the judge that you’re a reasonable, rational, flexible person floating very reasonable proposals. 
 
Try to move beyond the immediate emotions and instead look to what’s in your best interest in the long view. Think about what’s going to matter in the future and prioritize your long-term interests. This mindset will ultimately help you and your partner move forward toward your next respective chapters amicably. 

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Fidelity does not provide legal or tax advice. The information herein is general in nature and should not be considered legal or tax advice. Consult an attorney or tax professional regarding your specific situation.

This information is general in nature and provided for educational purposes only.

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