Should You File for Divorce Before Your Spouse?

Depending on your situation, it could really matter whether you or your spouse file for divorce first. Sometimes, certain factors in your overall settlement may be influenced depending on who initiated the divorce proceedings.

Often, the spouse that files for divorce may have more perceived control over the divorce process because they have had additional time to prepare. Because they determined when the divorce would begin, it may appear that the spouse who files was able to assemble the best, most skilled team of lawyers to advise and guide them.

The spouse who files for divorce may also have time to make necessary financial preparations, such as saving to pay their attorney, strengthening their credit score and being able to sort through all financial documents related to their case. Filing first may also allow for a spouse to prevent their partner from hiding assets, documents or other evidence relevant to your negotiations.

Filing first may also determine where your divorce proceedings are held. If you and your spouse live in different counties or even different states, the jurisdiction in which your divorce is filed could have a significant impact on your settlement outcome.

Additionally, by filing for divorce before your spouse, you may be first to present your case if your divorce ends up in a trial. This could have positive or negative implications on your divorce attorney’s strategy, thus it is worth speaking with a legal advisor before entering into a divorce.

Finally, the member of the couple who files for divorce may include certain grounds for divorce in their initial paperwork that sway the perception of a case. For example, a husband may note that he is filing for divorce because his wife committed adultery. Even if this claim turns out to be untrue, the allegation may set the tone for the rest of the divorce proceedings.

Before filing for divorce, it’s in your best interest to speak with a skilled lawyer. Work with the experienced Long Island legal team at Bryan L. Salamone & Associates, P.C. for the guidance and advice you need.

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