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Is There a Best and Worst Time of the Year to Divorce?

Divorce is generally not something that is easy for either spouse to endure, no matter how amicable the circumstances might be, and it might never seem like there is a "best" time for it. That said, for some, January is not only the best time of the year to file, but also the most popular time of year, earning it the nickname "divorce month." It makes sense for emotional reasons, of course. When the New Year begins, people tend to crave a fresh start and go to great lengths to achieve what they believe will make them happiest.

There are also economic reasons for January being a popular month to file for divorce. If your spouse is expecting a big bonus at the end of the year and you are in a community property state like California, it might be a good idea to stick it out through the end of the year. If you are the one expecting the bonus, however, waiting until January might not be the best time for you.

Other months with high divorce rates include March and August. For those who are attempting to make a marriage work, failed reconciliation efforts during Valentine's Day might be too much of a disappointment, spurring the decision to divorce. If the summer vacation does not go well, couples might also decide to split, which is why there is another divorce surge in August. While divorcing in January presents some benefits, March and August divorces are largely based on emotion rather than logic. In truth, the best time for a couple to divorce should not be based on the time of year, but rather on the financial readiness of one to endure the process.


  • Get your paperwork together: Organize and assemble all relevant financial paperwork and keep it with either a trusted friend, relative, or in a safe deposit box that is inaccessible to your spouse. You might not be entirely sure what financial or legal documents you will need, so it would also be wise to consult with an attorney to learn what you will need to collect. It might take some time to prepare what you need, so try to be patient. Having these documents readily at hand will save you time and money. If you save this step for later, your spouse might try to deliberately undermine the process and attempt to withhold the documents you need.
  • Establish your own credit and open your own bank accounts: You will also need to lay the foundation for your financial future as a single individual. Good credit is an essential part of this, so get a copy of your credit report, examine it, and correct any errors that it might have. When you begin to start opening checking and savings accounts in your name, be sure to do this at a bank where you and your spouse are not currently doing business.
  • Begin putting a professional divorce team together: The process of selecting a proper divorce attorney should not be done on the fly. Instead, you should take the time to interview several attorneys before making your final decision. You do not have to become best friends with your attorney, but you absolutely should trust him or her and feel respected and comfortable. It is also crucial to feel confident in your attorney's abilities and knowledge regarding the law as well as any special circumstances pertaining to your case.

If your case involves particularly complex financial issues, you might want to consider working with a firm that will put a team of professionals in your corner, including a divorce financial advisor.

Ultimately, the best time to divorce is when you are not only certain it is the right decision for you, but also when you are fully prepared to go through with it. Anything less might spell disaster for you.

Divorce Attorneys in Murrieta

Not all divorce attorneys are the same. Some are simply more qualified than others. At the Westover Law Group, our Murrieta divorce team is led by Andrew L. Westover, a Certified Family Law Specialist by the California Board of Legal Specialization. This means he is among the top 3% of attorneys who go through this rigorous process and have the required training and education to earn recognition in this field of practice. You can trust that we will use our expertise, skill, and knowledge to get you through this difficult time while protecting your best interests.

If you are considering a divorce or have been served with divorce papers, now is the time to speak with us. Contact our office today at (951) 643-0085. All calls are answered 24/7.

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