Separation can be a messy business. No-one wants it to be, but by its very nature, it often is. Unfortunately, the messier your divorce, the more it is likely to cost you.

And the more your separation costs you, the less money you have to begin your new life as a single parent.

For this reason alone, we strongly suggest you try and remain amicable with your ex-partner throughout your separation proceedings.

However, this is not the only reason for amicability. If you and your ex-partner remain civil you are paving the way for a successful co-parenting relationship, so the real winners are your children.

With this in mind, allow us to explain how being amicable with you ex during divorce can save you money … and have a myriad of other benefits.

YOU CAN AVOID THE COST OF FAMILY COURT

When it comes to separation, there are a number of paths you can go down. And the one that you seriously want to avoid at all costs (excuse the pun) is ending up in the Family Court.

If your matter goes this far you will find yourself paying fees to two separate lawyers, as well as a number of court costs – all from your asset pool before it has even been split.

Not only this, instead of deciding between yourself and your ex-partner how to split your assets, the court will make these important decisions on your behalf. These are verdicts which may not go your way and could affect the rest of your life.

YOU CAN AVOID THE COST OF LAWYERS

There is a common misconception that hiring lawyers for a separation is a necessity, even if you don’t have your day in court.

We are here to tell you that this is not the case.

Here at Divide we are Financial Separation Specialists who help you financially separate and get your orders approved by the family court, without using lawyers.

The financial benefits of not using lawyers and instead working with Separation Accountants include:

  • We work with both you and your ex-partner together so there is no “fighting corners” which can slow down the process. Generally, the longer your separation takes, the more it will cost.
  • There are no unnecessary letters, emails and phone calls made by your lawyers on behalf of you and your ex-partner – each at a cost.
  • Working together you are likely to remain more amicable and find better solutions quicker
  • Often lawyers need to refer to accountants for more complex property settlement matters, which is an addition cost
  • Working together with a Financial Separation Specialist, you and your ex-partner will receive only one bill to split between you, as opposed to two separate lawyer bills

YOU CAN EVEN AVOID THE COST OF MEDIATION

Another cost you can save on if you and your ex-partner can remain amicable throughout your separation, is that of mediation.

Family mediation is where an independent, professionally trained family mediator helps you and your ex-partner to agree on issues such as:

  • Financial settlement
  • Child maintenance
  • Parenting arrangements

If you are struggling to find common ground, the first step is to source a family mediator to assist you.

Although there are some free mediation services in Australia, most come at a cost. Therefore, if you can make decisions independently, without the help of a mediator then money will be saved.

Having said this, a good mediator is worth their weight in gold if they successfully help you find resolutions and you can avoid lawyers, and possible court.

YOU CAN START OVER SOONER

If you are not working amicably with your ex-partner to reach an agreement with your property settlement and parenting arrangements, the process can drag on for months, even years. As we have mentioned, generally the longer the process, the costlier it will be.

Not only that, all the while you are arguing with your ex-partner, parts of your life are on hold making it harder to focus on your own financial future. This could include bank accounts put on hold and/or paying into a mortgage while you decide what to do with the family home and rising solicitor bills.

None of these things are conducive to forging your own, solid financial pathway as a single parent. We advise getting everything formalised from your relationship so you can concentrate on rebuilding your personal wealth.

START WORKING TOGETHER FINANCIALLY

If you and your ex-partner are planning to co-parent, then you will still be working together financially in some sense. Whether you have a Child Support arrangement or a private agreement, money will be changing hands as you raise your children.

Being civil with your partner at this stage of the game will make all the difference. You will be able to communicate effectively and find financially viable solutions that work for the whole family, without the fuss.

It might take a while and a good amount of patience to find amicable ground with your ex-partner, but your finances (and you kids) will thank you for it.

Belinda Eldridge
Posted by Belinda Eldridge
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