Tips You Should Know When Going Through a Separation or Divorce

A separation or divorce can be a very stressful time in your life. Marriage breakdown increases the long-term risks of a heart attack, especially for women, according to a 2015 U.S. study from Duke University. Marriage breakdown also negatively impacts income, especially for women, and it can also adversely affect retirement savings and one’s credit rating. Additionally, children who grow up in families subject to separation or divorce are more likely to experience divorce as well in adulthood. Minimizing the effects of separation or divorce is critical for anyone going through it.

Several tips can assist you if you are thinking about a separation or divorce in the Waterloo area. These tips (described below) include getting professional legal advice, keeping your emotions in check, getting your separation finalized as soon as possible, and keeping any children out of the conflict.

Get Professional Advice

The professional advice of a family law lawyer can save you time and money in the long run. C. Richard Buck has the benefit of 40 years of experience from other family situations and ongoing exposure to the current legislation. At your initial consultation, he can assess your situation and let you know right away what information is needed for you and the other party to reach an agreement, and explain your options to you. He will be able to advise you and advocate for you if obstacles to a fair resolution of outstanding items occur.

By contrast, representing yourself can be time consuming, emotionally draining and potentially costly. It can be quite complex to prepare all the necessary documents, evidence, and arguments you need for a successful case. You could also make costly mistakes, whether it means settling for an agreement that does not sufficiently protect your interests or your children’s interests, or failing to agree to terms that can lead to a cost order against you from your ex-spouse. Hiring C. Richard Buck to represent you means getting the appropriate legal advice and all the complicated documentation prepared in the correct format on time.

Keep Your Emotions in Check

It is important not to allow you anger to get the best of your or for your separation or divorce to consume your entire life. A family law lawyer in Waterloo can act as a buffer between you and the other party and help you to conduct yourself professionally. If you hire C. Richard Buck, he will take responsibility for the file and keep you informed, which can help to alleviate a great deal of pressure for you.

Keep Children Out of the Conflict

It cannot be stressed enough that children need to be kept out of marital discord when a breakdown occurs. If you or the other parent begin consciously or unconsciously speaking negatively about the other parent in front of your child, your child could be negatively influenced and become a target of parental alienation. Children often feel caught in the middle when they are exposed to conflict and may inadvertently align themselves with one parent over another. If you child comes to refuse to see the unfavoured parent over time, your child is hurt at the time and long-term. Children are entitled to a relationship with each parent and each parent has a positive duty to provide access to the other parent. 

If your child becomes alienated from one of the parents, the court could make an order for a referral to the Office of the Children’s Lawyer (OCL) to assess and potentially represent your child’s best interests. An assessment under s.30 of the Children’s Law Reform Act could also be conducted.

Get Your Separation Finalized As Soon As Possible

Often couples can to agree to divide their assets and income in the early stages of a separation, before negative feelings become entrenched. As the months go on, it can take even longer to reach an agreement and the parties may be less willing to consider alternate dispute resolution, such as mediation or arbitration.

When arriving at the terms of your separation, it is best to avoid a homemade agreement. If you signed a written agreement that is not in your best interests, you may need to live with it as is. Or, it could happen that the homemade agreement you wish to keep is later challenged in court. 

The court can set aside a homemade agreement if it is considered unconscionable under various grounds. For example, an order could be made to vary an agreement if it fails to disclose major assets or liabilities of a party, a party did not understand the nature or consequences of the agreement, it does not have the best interests of a minor child represented, or it fails to adhere to child support provisions contained in the child support tables. By contrast, a professional legal agreement has significant sustainability.

Contact the Law Offices of C. Richard Buck - Over 40 Years of Experience as a Family Lawyer in Waterloo 

C. Richard Buck is a divorce lawyer in Waterloo. He is a certified specialist in family law by the Law Society of Upper Canada since 1991 and has a reputation for excellent quality. He routinely prepares separation agreements in Waterloo that involve a variety of issues and concerns. Let his team of family law professionals support you in this period of stress and uncertainty. Contact our law firm in Waterloo at 519-579-3400.