Out With the Old, In With the New
Divorce tends to incite people to change: change their look, change their home, or even change their way of life. It’s great to change your life in positive ways after divorce, but before you toss out the old to make room for the new, make sure you don’t throw away these five things that may have more value than you think right now:
- Family photos. These aren’t just for you; they are for your children. Years down the road your child may want to see what his or her parents were like before the divorce. Holding on to family photos can give your child the chance to learn more about his or her family later on. This is important if your child is very young. Some of these photos may remind you of better times, and even the nostalgia over those times is valuable and irreplaceable.
- In the heat of a divorce, it can be tempting to do away with valuable items that you can no longer stand the sight of. But your spouse may share ownership of these items with you. Destroying, selling, or giving away valuable items your spouse has a claim to is a sure fire way to end up in divorce court. Until you have an agreement with your spouse, know that nearly everything you own may be subject to Massachusetts divorce law, meaning you may have to compensate your spouse for his or her share if you get rid of it.
- I can’t stress this enough. As soon as you start contemplating divorce, keep good tabs on all paperwork in your household. Getting divorce requires compiling huge amounts of information. That information is often in the household paperwork you stash. Getting replacement copies will cost money and take time. In fact, make copies while you’re at it.
- Household items. Sometimes when spouses move out during a divorce they take very few personal belongings. Just the basics, just enough to get by. While this may work for the time being, that spouse may regret leaving his or her belongings behind once the divorce finalizes and they realize they are on their own. Don’t toss items your spouse left; he or she may need them later on, and they could be considered marital property.
- Your wedding dress and other mementos. Yes, the marriage ended. Yes, that casts a shadow on all wedding memories. But this is only true for you and your spouse. Your family and your children may still enjoy them even if you don’t.
Practicing the Conscious Throw Away
Knowing what to value and prioritize in the midst of a divorce can be hard, and making a mistake could cost you financially or emotionally down the road. Consider speaking with an experienced Massachusetts divorce mediator if you want to divorce conscientiously and amicably. Divorce mediation can help you and your spouse efficiently negotiate the terms of your divorce while still protecting your priorities.
If you have questions about Massachusetts divorce, Mediation Advantage Services can help you. Polly A. Tatum is experienced in divorce mediation and can help you and your spouse divorce in an amicable and non-adversarial way. Based in historic Worcester with a satellite office in Northboro, MA, our firm serves all cities and towns throughout Massachusetts and Worcester County including, Auburn, Paxton, Leicester, Sutton, Grafton, Shrewsbury, Westboro, Northboro, Southboro, Holden, Sterling, Princeton, Worcester, Charlton, Millbury, Dudley, Spencer, Brookfield, Sudbury, Natick, Framingham, Hopkinton, Milford, Blackstone, Leominster, Fitchburg, Acton, Jefferson, Barre, Oakham, Cambridge, Newton, Marlboro, Lancaster, Bolton, and Hudson. Call our office at (508) 645-6374, fill out our online form, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org today to schedule your Complimentary Mediation Success Planning Session. You can also sign up for our eNewsletter or download our free e-book for more information regarding divorce in Massachusetts.