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Tactics when seeking a divorce from a bully

Divorce can be a difficult time in a New Jersey resident's life. When one's spouse is a bully who thrives on control and manipulation, it becomes all the more important to protect oneself during the divorce process. When attempting to obtain a divorce from a bullying spouse, there are several steps that one should consider.

For one thing, set aside cash that cannot be accessed by the other spouse. Having a job or another source of income that provides exclusive funds can free one from dependence on a bullying, controlling spouse for payment of court costs and attorneys' fees. Also, make copies of all financial records, including investments, retirement accounts, housing and others. Property acquired during the marriage is joint, so it is critical that one has these records showing the account balances on the date of separation.

It is also in the interest of a spouse trying to divorce a bully to get to court as fast as possible. While most divorcing spouses in New Jersey today reach a pre-trial settlement, this is one scenario in which it will likely be in a partner's best interest to go through the full courtroom divorce process. Bullies thrive on controlling their partners, but in court, the judge will be in control of the situation. The judge can also potentially award living expenses and attorneys' fees, which can help establish independence even if a controlling partner has had one's financial accounts drained or frozen.

New Jersey residents going through a divorce from a bullying and controlling spouse may find that a legal professional can help sort out the situation. Although divorce can be challenging, freeing oneself from a bully's control can be the first step towards a new life.

Source: CNBC, "Protect Your Finances While Divorcing a Bully," Elizabeth MacBride, June 23, 2013

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