You can find a huge amount of information about divorce online today (some good and some bad). In perusing the information out there, I even ran across some articles about music and top songs to get your through a divorce (if you find yourself needing a pick me up, take a peek). The songs ranged from “I’m Still Standing” by Elton John to “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor. This got me thinking of the old country song, “D-I-V-O-R-C-E” sang by Tammy Wynette and I developed the following acronym or commonly used terms in a divorce proceeding:
D—“Divide” Whether your divorce is contested or uncontested, your attorney will need to assist you with a division of your assets and debts. If the court hears your case, the court is required to make an equitable (does not necessarily mean equal) division of your assets and debts.
I—“Irreconcilable Differences” In speaking with clients, this ground for divorce is brought up most often by clients, but also is the most misunderstood. This ground requires you and your spouse to have agreed to all issues in your divorce (property and debt issues, parenting plan, support issues) and does not simply mean that you both agree to get a divorce.
V—“Violence” If there is abuse occurring in the marriage, a restraining order or order of protection may need to be obtained. If you are the victim of domestic abuse, remember you are not alone and you should not hesitate to inform your attorney or other outreach program.
O—“Order” This will become a familiar word to you during your divorce proceeding. Depending on the issues involved, we may have numerous orders in your case. An Order is a written instrument signed by the judge which will direct the parties of action to take or possibly action not to take.
R—“Request for Production of Documents” Requests are a set of discovery which require a party to provide documentation. An example may be to require a party to provide their income tax returns or credit card statements.
C—“Custody” The old term for what is now deemed the “Primary Residential Parent.” If you have children, we will have to prepare a parenting plan which will include a designation of a Primary Residential Parent.
E—”Expert Witness” An expert may be necessary to your case. The expert can take the form of an accountant, appraiser, counselor, etc.