While a majority of our posts on family law issues tend to focus on how to manage the emotional and logistical difficulties that come during divorce, we find it prudent to talk about the importance of planning for divorce. Basically, planning helps to put things in perspective and get past the emotional barriers. Think of the old adage “if you prepare for the worst, you can expect the best.

One of the emotional barriers to divorce may include when to initiate the process. Indeed, there are several points during the year where you should avoid serving your soon-to-be ex. This post will identify a few.

During a family gathering – For most kids, graduation season is here, and families will come together to celebrate a child’s major accomplishment. Despite your feelings about your soon-to-be ex, a graduation party (or ceremony) is not the time to initiate a divorce.

Just before your child’s wedding – As we have seen from coverage of the royal wedding, families are coming together to celebrate a couple’s love and admiration of each other. As such, a wedding is not the place to infuse drama and strike at emotional espionage.  Divorce announcements can wait for more opportune time.

Before a bonus is awarded – If you never heard of a “valuation date” or a “separation date,” is time to get familiar. Simply put, if you file for divorce before an annual bonus is awarded.  This date is critically important because it sets the final date where a person’s salary or bonus can be considered joint marital property.

If you have questions about initiating a divorce, an experienced divorce attorney can advise you.