Disclaimer: I am not an attorney and do not give legal advice. Anything in this article is for informational purposes only.
Family law is different from state to state, but there are enough similarities that the information contained here will apply.
STEP 1: THE DIVORCE PROCESS STARTS
You and your spouse have come to realize that things are not going smoothly. There are arguments, you'd rather be with your friends then your spouse, and there may be long moments of silence at home. Whatever has changed, one or both of you decide it's time to split up and go your separate ways.
One of you has to find a lawyer and file a petition or complaint to get things in motion. Then a summons is served on you. This means that you have a certain time period in which to respond. This time period may vary depending upon your state's laws. The divorce process has officially started.
STEP 2: DIVISION OF ASSETS
Now comes the hard part. Someone usually has to move out. Usually, this falls to the husband. There are many things that have to be taken into account. I am going to touch on only a few.
Money (usually the most important asset) must be divided equitably as soon as possible. Get what is yours as quickly as you can now, because later on it becomes near impossible. Get your own separate accounts set up for a deposit of any funds you manage to get your hands on, preferably at a different bank then your joint account was located.
If you are the one moving out, get your name taken off the utilities, telephone, and anything else to do with the domicile you just vacated. Any asset that has both your names as co-owners should be taken into account and dealt with in such a way that only one of you is the sole owner.
This is a good time to discuss whether or not to sell certain assets, such as a house, boat, cars, etc. Most women want to keep “their" house. If children are involved, it's not a bad deal, as they will not have to move, start new schools, new friends, etc. Just make sure you work it so you get some of your equity out so you can afford to live somewhere other than a shack. A preliminary plan for a budget, think of it as a pre-support plan, should be worked out.
Gerald Costa has gone through the divorce and child custody process. I put together an ebook to help those that have to go through a divorce where child custody will become an issue. Find out more Family Law, Child Custody and Custody Battle information at http://www.secretsoffamilylaw.com