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Do I need to tell my spouse I’m consulting a divorce attorney?

On Behalf of | Nov 9, 2021 | Family Law |

Things may have been bad in your marriage for some time before you speak to a divorce attorney. You may not even know for certain yet whether you want to file for divorce or you just need to know your options.

Some people feel guilty even learning about the basics of divorce law in Maryland. They might think that it is unfair or inappropriate to talk to a divorce attorney without discussing the issue with their spouse first.

Do you have to tell your spouse that you want to talk to a lawyer about a possible divorce?

You have no obligation to disclose every choice you make

In marriage, honesty is typically the best policy. However, there are that you don’t have to share with your spouse and which may not be wise to share with them. Advising them that you want to talk to a divorce attorney before you take that step could be a mistake.

First of all, bringing up divorce can damage the trust and sense of security your spouse has in the relationship. While it is important to be honest about your intentions, they don’t have to know every detail of your internal experience unless you decide to move forward.

Not only could telling your spouse ahead of time add to their emotional distress, but it could complicate the process of divorce.

Being the one to initiate divorce does come with certain benefits

Divorcing can bring out the worst behaviors in some people. Your ex might try to hide property, misappropriate marital assets or destroy personal or financial records that might influence how the courts handle your divorce. When you act first by consulting with an attorney, you are in a position to protect yourself from such misconduct.

You can easily obtain financial records without the interference of your ex. You also have the option of deciding when to file, a choice that your spouse may not leave to you if they know that you have started thinking about divorce.

Sitting down to talk to an attorney doesn’t necessarily mean you will file for divorce. It does mean that you will have accurate information if you do decide to divorce, which is important for your protection. Knowing the laws and your rights as a spouse considering a Maryland divorce can help you protect yourself.