Divorce is confrontational as it is, but when tensions grow between two (soon-to-be-ex) spouses, they end up trying to use things against each other. In 2021, there were 690,000 divorces in the US, with many studies showing that the most common causes include infidelity and financial issues.
No one wants to believe that their partner’s capable of pulling sneaky tricks like bringing up something you told them in private. Nevertheless, it’s important to know what your spouse can try to use against you during divorce proceedings and how your behavior can impact the outcome. More information about divorce can be found here https://rightlawyers.com/
Text Messages or Social Media Posts
When you’re in a less-than-happy marriage, social media may seem like a great place to vent your frustrations. However, you need to be careful about what you’re sharing with the rest of the world. This applies to the divorce process as well. If you’re in the middle of a divorce and you go out to party with friends, it could be presented as though you were using marital assets irresponsibly.
Similarly, if you share photos of yourself going on vacation, your spouse’s attorney can use it to argue that you have hidden assets. The same applies to your private messages. Anything that can be interpreted as if you’re harassing, threatening, or cheating on your spouse could potentially be used against you.
Alcohol Addiction or Substance Abuse
If you have a drinking problem or a history of substance abuse, it can wind up hurting your chances of winning child custody. It’s common for the other party’s divorce lawyers to argue that your struggles with addiction make you an unfit parent. And it can affect how much alimony you need to pay or will receive. For instance, if you’re unemployed, they may argue that you should receive less alimony.
In no-fault divorce states, marital assets are divided equally during a divorce, as per section 3502 of the Divorce Code. Section 3505 of the Divorce Code states each party must submit an inventory of their assets and finances, along with financial information, when they file for divorce. Not disclosing all your assets is seen as perjury and results in fines. Not to mention, the judge may award a greater share of marital assets to your spouse.
Divorce lawyers also advise against making large withdrawals from joint bank accounts. You should also avoid selling valuable marital assets or transferring their ownership to someone else. Your spouse can accuse you of marital waste and dissipation of assets. If the other party proves that you’re excessively spending marital assets, they can argue for a bigger share.
In cases involving minor children, the court prioritizes their well-being when making decisions during divorce proceedings. If you struggle with anger issues or have a history of abusive behavior, it can affect your child custody case and visitation rights.
Your spouse’s divorce attorney may claim that you’re unfit to take care of your children, leading to limited contact with your kids. It’s important to be honest with your attorney about any abusive behavior or anger issues so that they’re not unprepared when the other party brings them up during proceedings.
Entering a New Relationship During The Divorce
Divorce lawyers recommend waiting until the divorce is finalized. After all, even though your romantic relationship with your spouse has ended, you’re still legally married. If you and your spouse have young children, seeing a new romantic partner during the divorce process could be used against you. Your spouse’s divorce attorney may argue that awarding you custody won’t serve your child’s interests.
Keeping Your Spouse From Meeting The Kids
If you currently have a custody order and your spouse has custody time, trying to keep them from meeting the kids is a big mistake. Some spouses may use this tactic as a way to prove that they’re a more attentive parent and, thus, the best choice for being awarded primary custody. But keep in mind that the courts may see it as being uncooperative with the other parent or trying. You may also be seen as trying to influence older children into choosing to be placed with you. If they’re able to prove that you’re not letting them see their kids, the court will consider this when awarding custody.
Frequent Trips Out of Town
When one parent has to take frequent, unscheduled trips out of town due to work, the other parent can argue that this can cause an inability to look after their child. If you plan on relocating, whether it’s in-state or out-of-state, you must provide sufficient notice to your spouse. Failing to do so can result in the court modifying an existing custody order.
Delaying The Divorce Process
If you’ve had a less-than-happy marriage, it’s tempting to prolong the divorce process as a way to cause emotional and financial stress. You may want to decline offers at negotiations or delay signing paperwork, but this can backfire. If the judge determines that you’re being uncooperative and acting in bad faith, they can order you to pay your spouse’s legal fees.
Instead of stalling, talk to your divorce attorney about the best way to resolve the process as efficiently as possible. If you’re concerned that your spouse is delaying the process by being uncooperative, it’s best to seek help from an experienced divorce attorney.
During the divorce process, both sides may feel tempted to use each other’s mistakes against them. It’s important to be aware of things that can be used against you to ensure a smooth and efficient divorce process. This gives you a clear idea as to what you should and shouldn’t do. If your spouse has used any of the above-mentioned aspects against you, such as social media posts, substance abuse issues, or hidden assets, consult an experienced divorce attorney on the best way to address the issue.