One of the tricky things about divorce is that most people are doing it for the first time. You might learn a lot along the way, but then it’s too late to use it.

It doesn’t have to be that way. You can lean on the experience of others. Below are some things people wished they had known prior to divorce that may help as you work through yours.

  1. Learn more about your money. Understand where it all is and how to access it. For instance, don’t just know that you have a joint checking account. Know exactly what it contains, how many accounts are linked to it, what the account numbers are and what passwords you need to access it.
  2. Plan for the future right away. Don’t focus so much on the divorce itself that you forget about the realities of life after divorce. Where will you live? What car will you drive? Get everything set up for a smooth transition.
  3. Don’t assume you’ll be over it, emotionally, as soon as you’re done in court. It’s fine to take your time and work through it. Be sure you have a support system.
  4. Know that you’ll probably have to pay for things you didn’t anticipate. It’s good to have extra money on hand. For instance, maybe you’re on your spouse’s medical insurance plan. You’ll need to buy your own. Be prepared.

These are just a few things to think about, but they can help you tremendously. Make sure you know all of the proper legal steps you should take moving forward.

Source: Womans Day, “”What I Wish I Knew Before I Got Divorced”,” Natasha Burton, accessed Oct. 11, 2017