Avoid These Common Divorce Mistakes
Sometimes divorce brings out the worst in people. Sometimes when our emotions are high we do things we shouldn’t do.
If you are doing these things they will complicate your life, both now and in the future. It’s so not worth it.
Divorce No No #1: Using Your Children as Pawns
Children need both of their parents. Children are people, not parts of a chess game. Even if you can convince them that you are the best parent in the world and that they should never be with their other parent, it will backfire on you one day. And when it does your children may want nothing more to do with you for the rest of their lives. Even if you are the better parent, it’s not your place to decide how your kids should feel about their mother or father. They can love both of you at the same time.
Divorce No No #2: Stealing
You learned this rule in kindergarten. Don’t do it.
Divorce No No #3: Hiding Money
The money you earned during the marriage is community property in California, with very few exceptions. Don’t empty out your bank accounts and hide the money from your spouse.
Divorce No No #4: Bringing Your New Significant Other to Court
Please, please, please, please, please do not bring your new boo to court. And do not bring them to the lawyers office. They should never be at your mediation or listen in. This sends a message to your spouse that says, “I’m in power. I’m in control. I’ve got someone so much better than you.” This will backfire. Immediately! It will get nasty and ugly real fast.
Divorce No No #5: Filing False Reports with Child Protective Services (CPS)
Do not file a false claim of child abuse. This is cruel to the other parent and most importantly it’s cruel to your child. It clogs the system and makes it more difficult for cases that really do need the court’s help involving abuse. It will be found out. It will drag out your case and complicate things. You will lose the trust of your children, the trust of anyone involved in your divorce and the trust of your ex. You do need some level of trust with your ex, even though you’re breaking up, because you’re raising children together.
Divorce No No #6: Canceling Insurance
When you file for divorce in California, on the back of the paperwork there are automatic temporary restraining orders (ATROs). One of those ATROs is canceling insurance. You are restrained from doing this. If you do it you’ll have to go back and eat crow and get that insurance re-instated. Do not cancel any insurance.
Breakups are hard and messy, but you are a grownup and you have a life that you need to live and live well. I don’t want you to carry any guilt or regret about how you handled yourself during your divorce.
Remember that life after divorce can be so sweet and so rewarding and I want that for you.
I am sure there are many more things that are divorce no no’s that are not on my list. If you have lived through one of these, or you have heard horror stories about them, please drop it below. If I get enough of these I’ll make another post.