The Dos and Don’ts of First Time Divorce


Dos and Don’ts of Divorce
  • Be honest with your attorney.  Be responsive to your attorney’s requests for information.
  • Make an inventory of all marital and separate real and personal property with approximate values.
  • Prepare a package of financial information including but not limited to: tax returns, bank statements, securities account information, credit card statements, loan documents, real estate transactions, etc.
  • List all the activities you participate in with your children.
  • Prepare a budget of your and your children’s monthly expenses.
  • Clarify for yourself, prior to seeing an attorney, your own important needs, interests and priorities.
  • Do not involve your children in the divorce proceedings.
  • Do not argue with your spouse.  If unavoidable, do not argue in front of your children.
  • Do not say negative things about your spouse to your children or to someone else within the hearing distance of your children.
  • Try not to get overly emotional around your children about your divorce or your life after divorce. You may risk increasing their insecurity and fear about the future.
  • Do not deny your spouse access to the children, unless there is a good reason to do so (i.e. domestic violence, abuse, etc.) and then only on the advice of counsel.
  • Do not change the locks to the residence unless advised to do so by counsel.
Jacqueline Newman is a Family Law Attorney & Managing Partner at Berkman Bottger Newman & Rodd in NYC. Ms. Newman’s practice consists of litigation, collaborative law and mediation. Jacqueline specializes in complex high net worth matrimonial cases and negotiating prenuptial agreements. She has appeared as a commentator on various television shows and has been quoted as an expert in numerous publications, including Glamour Magazine, Crain’s New York Business, U.S. News and World Report, Woman’s Day and The Huffington Post.

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