If you have decided to divorce, one of the first major steps in the process will be to inform your spouse of your decision. This is usually done in one of two ways: (i) by serving your spouse with divorce papers, or (ii) with a conversation that begins, “We need to talk.”

If your goal is to work through an amicable divorce, then the second option will most likely (though not necessarily) be best. But, before you let your intentions be known, there are some important steps to take and considerations to keep in mind.

Preparing to Talk With Your Spouse About Filing for Divorce in Texas

1. Consider the Methods for Getting Divorced

There are several methods for getting a divorce. While most spouses will choose amicable methods – such as negotiations, mediation, and collaborative divorce – a small percentage of divorces end up in court. Before telling your spouse you want a divorce, you will want to think about which method would be best for you.

2. Prepare for Your Spouse’s Reaction

How will your spouse react when you tell him or her that you want a divorce? Beyond the initial emotional response, is there a chance that he or she will react violently or attempt to deprive you of access to your financial accounts or your children? If these are concerns, there are legal steps you can take to protect yourself.

3. Know What You Can (and Can’t) Do

Once you file for divorce in Texas, there are certain things that you can and can’t do. For example, you can continue to pay your monthly bills, but you generally cannot make large “extraordinary” purchases. Likewise, you can continue to spend time with your children and live in the family home (and there are potential legal implications if you move out), but you cannot refuse to allow your spouse to spend time with your children.

4. Learn About the Laws that Apply to Divorce

In Texas (and other states), there are laws that apply to all aspects of the divorce process. From dividing your property to establishing child custody and visitation, understanding what to expect in the future will help you make informed decisions as you plan to talk with your spouse about divorce.

5. Start Thinking About Your Priorities

As you learn more about the divorce process, you will want to begin thinking about your priorities as well. Amicable divorces inherently involve compromise, so you will need to have a strategy for protecting what matters most while also being prepared to let other things go.

6. Be Prepared to Take Legal Action if Necessary

Finally, in the event that your spouse reacts inappropriately, you may need to be prepared to take legal action quickly. As a result, before speaking with your spouse, it is a good idea to speak with a divorce attorney.

Speak With a McKinney Divorce Attorney As Soon As Possible

We are a family law firm in McKinney, TX that represents spouses in all aspects of the divorce process. If you would like to discuss your next steps with one of the firm’s experienced divorce attorneys, you can call (214) 726-1450 or contact the firm online for a free initial consultation.