1. Preparing secretly. Gathering records surreptitiously will damage the trust with your spouse, who will learn what you did.
2. Not discussing the divorce in advance. Failing to be direct, open, and honest before filing will cause your spouse to want his or her attorney to examine everything.
3. Making nasty comments. Avoiding an adversarial path will smooth the path to agreement, and it is critical if you have children.
4. Confessing past sins. Revealing past mistakes and betrayals may make you feel better, but will fuel your spouse's rage.
5. Mishandling bank accounts and credit cards. Taking advantage by withdrawing or charging inappropriately will bite you in subsequent negotiations. If you must withdraw, take half only.
6. Hoarding financial information. Failing to freely share financial data will increase your legal and accounting fees.
7. Hiding income or assets. Private investigators have many methods for finding money, and judges will punish the concealer.
8. Beginning a relationship early. Do not be surprised at the jealousy your spouse exhibits if you begin a new relationship before your divorce is finalized.
9. Being difficult. The harder you make it to reach a settlement, the higher your and your spouse's legal bills will be. And the marital estate is the sole source of payment of both attorneys.
10. Continuing to fight. Battling post-divorce over child issues will be damaging to the children, emotionally painful, and costly.