This week, the world woke up to news that one of Hollywood’s biggest power couples – Brangelina – had split, with Angelina filing for divorce from Brad.
When a couple separates, they are both swept up into a whirlwind of issues ranging from new living arrangements to questions of who gets custody of the children. No matter how amicable the situation may seem, divorce is hard on all parties involved. Brad and Angelina are about to discover just how difficult it can be whilst deflecting speculative questions and prying eyes.
Here are five pointers that might ensure the Brangelina split doesn’t get out of hand:
- Speak to an attorney
Ideally, it is best to consult legal advice before filing for a divorce as there are steps that can be taken to avoid drastic action. These steps include marriage counselling and family mediation but if divorce is imminent, speaking to a lawyer is advised. As a result, actions taken subsequent to filing for divorce will be legal and should assist to keep both parties well informed of the process.
- Consider the children
Try to remember that you and your partner are divorcing, not the children. Both Brad and Angelina were often quoted to say that their children are the best thing that has happened to them, but what will happen to them once the divorce proceedings commence? If this is a difficult time for you, imagine the toll it will take on the children. It is important to note that reforms to the Family Law Act have attempted to emphasise shared parenting responsibilities so it would be ill-advised to encourage the children not to speak to the other parent or deliberately sour the relationship between you and your partner.
- Take note of Furniture and Furnishings and Copy Documents
Brad and Angelina will certainly have a hard task of determining their asset pool, but for most of us, this pool will include bank accounts, debts, shares in a business, the matrimonial home, cars and even household furniture. It is important to determine these assets when the time comes to split up the property or when the Court becomes involved. Subsequently, any documents that can prove these assets such as bank statements, wills, car registration titles will be useful when dividing the property.
- Consider your own earning potential
If your divorce goes to the Family Court, it is necessary to be aware of your own earning potential as splitting up the property can be affected by you or your partner’s potential to earn money. In some cases, it is best to keep the matter out of court so that you and your partner can determine on your own who should keep what depending on individual circumstances.
- Consider alternatives to Court
In famous cases like that of Pitt and Jolie, going to court is expected. However, in ordinary circumstances, taking a divorce to court can be a significant financial and emotional burden on all parties involved. In most situations, both sides are at the mercy of the uncertainty of how a judge will rule. Therefore, alternative solutions should be considered. Rather than falling back on the belief that if all else fails, court is an option, the process of ‘collaborative divorce’ involves working with lawyers and additional experts to resolve the problem without going to trial. If both parties decide to go to court, they must acquire new lawyers. The greatest benefit of these processes is the autonomy it allows both you and your partner, as well as structuring a plan that will also suit the children.
If you are currently thinking about filing for divorce or wish to know more about the legalities surrounding the Brangelina split, do not hesitate to contact our offices on 02 8917 8700.