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Tips for couples interested in preparing for divorce

Too often couples considering divorce think that divorce is as simple as signing a piece of paper. While it may seem that way in Hollywood, in real life, divorce is a much more complex process. This is even more true for high-asset couples with complex estates. To expedite the process, however, there are a number of things that couples can do to prepare before any papers are ever drafted. The following are tips for Florida couples considering divorce.

Probably the most vital and effective task any couple can engage in ahead of time is a financial accounting of their assets. This includes a careful valuation of the couple's real estate holdings, business assets, retirement plans and investment portfolio. If a couple can accomplish this ahead of time, they will be on the fast track to a quick and efficient divorce.

Probably the second most time-consuming task that couples can accomplish ahead of time involves child custody issues. It is important to remember, however, that the court is not required to follow a couple's agreement. Rather, the court will base its decision regarding custody on the best interest of the child. Nevertheless, significant weight will be given to a couple's agreement. An amicable child custody agreement is also beneficial to everyone involved.

Child custody issues and property division are probably the two most time-consuming and costly components in any divorce proceeding. If a couple can work through these issues before hand, they will have accomplished a major goal. With that being said, there are many couples who simply cannot come to terms on any issue. In those cases, the couple may need the intervention of the court in order to resolve their differences.

Source: WXYZ, "January has long been a popular month for divorce filings," Lucy Carmel, Jan. 4, 2013

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