Approaching divorce is a lot like approaching any other complex problem. You can rush right into it and hope things turn out fine or you can take a little time to fully understand the scope of what is ahead and approach it methodically.

Entering a divorce with a plan of action means that you will have concrete objectives. It means that you’ll know what you want and the best strategy to get it. Pre-divorce planning can provide you with clarity before taking the first legal steps. An attorney can provide vital guidance to answer such questions as:

When (and how) should I tell my spouse?

Deciding you’re ready for divorce is a personal decision. Telling your spouse is a separate action. Sometimes it makes the most sense to tell them right away. Other times, in the case of an abusive spouse or where the relationship has completely fallen apart, it makes more sense to take some steps first.

How you answer this question sets the tone for your divorce.

Mediation or litigation?

For Florida couples going through a divorce, mediation may be a better choice than litigation. With mediation, it might be possible to wrap up the divorce quickly. Couples can reach creative solutions to both property division and child custody that works for them while maintaining control throughout the proceedings.

However, litigation is often necessary and unavoidable, depending on the issues and the personalities involved. An attorney’s perspective on divorce litigation is vital before making this decision.

What will life look like after my divorce is final?

In most divorces, child-centered issues are the central issues. However, in nearly every situation, having a healthy co-parenting relationship is a must. That may mean choosing a different strategy. If children aren’t an issue in your divorce, it may still pay to consider what kind of post-divorce relationship you want with your former spouse, if any at all.

Make the plan, then stick to it.

It is not enough to go into divorce with your eyes open. You need to understand what you’re doing and the reasons you’re doing it.