What Is A Fair Divorce Settlement?
So you’ve decided that divorce is a real possibility. Immediately your thoughts turned to your future and a grim picture of this new reality. “I don’t make enough money to live on my own.” Or “How much of my income will I have to give up to support my spouse and the kids?” “I’ll be living in poverty!” As a world of unknowns reveals itself in an avalanche of financial and emotional realities that must be dealt with, you wonder how bad it will get. Despite the stereotypes around vindictive nasty divorces, my experience is that the vast majority of couples truly and sincerely want what’s fair for all involved.
The problem here is that every person’s idea of fair is different. It could depend on how much emotional wounding may have happened in the marriage. There may be perceived wrongs that demand to be righted, apologies that remain unspoken. “Fair” may reside on the peaks of two separate mountains cut deeply by a river of conflict and resentments. This is the simple truth that has created a multi-billion dollar divorce industry. I think there is a different answer.
Let go of the need for fairness. I know, sounds crazy but try this on for size. What if each party didn’t worry about what the other person was getting. What if they each sat down with a divorce financial planner and simply figured out what they need for themselves to be able to be OK? And then they sit down with a mediator and start from there? Maybe it’s not equal. Maybe it’s not “fair”. Maybe it just works! For everyone involved! Now that is a win/win solution!
So, to paraphrase, fair is as fair does! Let it go! It doesn’t matter! Focus on the next phase of your life and what you now need to be happy. How you can move on in a healthy, happy way that will preserve your family unit for the future? As I always tell my clients, my goal is to help you be the best divorced family you can be, because you’re still a family.
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