If you have made the decision to leave but you are still not sure what to do, rest assured you are not the only one. Working up the courage to leave can be the hardest part – traditionally this is the step that had to be done on your own. That isn’t the case anymore. There are so many people available to help you weigh up the pros and cons, craft the words that you use to tell your spouse, help you prepare for the conversation and more.
Once you have made the decision to leave, you should obtain independent legal advice before you do so. It is always helpful to know what your rights and obligations are before you take that next step. That being said, it doesn’t mean that the first piece of news/information/ or correspondence your spouse receives about the separation should come from a lawyer. If you want to be able to try and resolve things as amicably as possible (and it is safe to do so) having a conversation together is going to help that process along.
Following your conversation, it is important that you give each other the time and space you both need to process what has or is happening. Each of you will be experiencing different emotions and reactions during this period and putting pressure on each other to reach an agreement will not help the situation. Equally, it is important to make sure that the children are given space to adjust to their new normal, as well as having the opportunity to ask questions and be given genuine answers by each of you.
When the time is right to put an arrangement in place you should find yourself a registered Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner (FDRP). An FDRP is a mediator who is specifically qualified to undertake Mediations in the Family Law area. The role of a FDRP is to help you both to keep the discussions child focussed so that you can be sure the agreement you are entering into is in the best interests of your children.
If you would like help in preparing for your separation book in a time to speak with our team here and we can start a conversation.