Divorcing While Pregnant
Choosing to get a divorce is never easy, and that decision becomes even more difficult if it happens while you are pregnant. After all, you have not only yourself and any children you already have to think about, but also a baby who isn’t even here yet. If you do think you want to divorce while you are pregnant, it’s important to make sure that you’re not acting impulsively as a result of hormones. Think long and hard about the situation and look for warning signs that existed before you became pregnant. Just make sure that this is really something you want to do before you go through with it.
Reasons to Divorce While Pregnant
People have all sorts of reasons to get a divorce, and these reasons can be the same during pregnancy, although there can also be other reasons. For example, some fathers may not want to take responsibility for their child, so they may want to file for divorce, thinking they can get out of paying for child support since the child isn’t born yet. Pregnant women may think that they can avoid having the child’s father in their life by divorcing while they are pregnant. Then there are more dangerous reasons to divorce, like if the father is abusive and the mother is concerned about her child.
State Divorce Laws
The laws about divorce are slightly different in each state, so it helps to find a lawyer who practices divorce law in your area. Most states require you to have the baby before you can get divorced. This is a very important factor because if it’s illegal to divorce while you are pregnant, then you will certainly have to wait. A lawyer in your area will be able to explain the law to you and tell you if there is any way for you to establish residency in a different state nearby and file for divorce there. In some cases, you may be able to establish a good reason for getting a divorce while you are pregnant.
As soon as the baby is born, there will likely be paternity tests to prove that the ex-husband really is the father of the baby. Along with these tests come custody hearings to determine who will be the custodial parent and whether the other parent will have any kind of visitation rights with the baby.
Since divorce is illegal in most states if the wife is pregnant, separation may be the only solution until the baby is born. In some ways, separation may be a good thing because it allows you to test the waters of what it will feel like when you are divorced without actually going through with it. Separation also gives you ample chance to get marital counseling and make sure that divorce is really what you want to do and not just about hormones.
Warnings about Divorce
Some lawyers will tell men to immediately empty out the joint bank accounts and stop paying bills so that the wife will have to settle quickly, especially if she makes less money than he does. If you are considering divorce while you are pregnant, it helps to take safeguards against this. Remember that you have your child to be concerned about, so take the time of your pregnancy to plan ahead for the bitter financial battle which may be ahead.