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Divorce Law in Montana

How to Find a Montana Divorce Attorney

Montana holds three entrances to Yellowstone National Park; that’s three ways to get to Old Faithful, the geyser that blows it’s top every 91 minutes. If you’re thinking about divorce and are interested in finding a Montana divorce attorney, you may feel like blowing your top every 91 minutes. While anger — even extreme anger — is completely normal during divorce, it likely won’t work well for you or your children.

People who fly into a rage always make a bad landing.

~Will Rogers

If you would like to feel less anger and move on, this article is for you. This article will show you how to benefit from being cooperative and patient during your divorce – and provides ways to deal with your anger.

We’ll discuss:

  • Montana specific divorce law requirements;
  • What you need to know about divorce; and
  • Whether it’s in your best interest to hire a Montana divorce lawyer and, if so, how to find a qualified lawyer and how to prepare to work with him or her.

Montana Divorce Law Specifics

  • Montana has residency requirements for divorce filings.
  • Montana divorce laws offer “no-fault” divorce grounds.
  • Montana uses the terms, “petitioner” and “respondent” to describe the spouse who initially filed the divorce papers and the other spouse, respectively.
  • In Montana, divorce papers are filed in the District Court of a particular county.
  • In some cases, alimony is available.
  • In Montana property distribution will be an equitable distribution. “Equitable” means “fair”, which may or may not also mean, “equal”.
  • Child support will be based upon the Percentage of Income Formula.

What You Need to Know About Divorce

Temper tantrums, however fun they may be to throw, rarely solve whatever problem is causing them.

~Lemony Snicket

If you’re interested in getting more of what you want (and who isn’t?) in your divorce, this section will show you how.

Everything included is common sense, but challenging to implement during a time of anger and emotional strain.

  • Throughout your divorce, your goal needs to be to compromise, communicate, cooperate, and collaborate. Each time you are faced with a challenge, a question, or a choice, base your response on these four principles.
    If you act or react in anger, you’ll antagonize your spouse. Antagonizing will always result in more stress for you and your children, more legal fees, and likely fewer assets in any property settlement.
    In addition, if you make your spouse angry and end up going to court, you lose control and the court will take over. This means lots of stress, no choice, and much higher legal fees.

  • Only hire an attorney who will respect and share the principles of compromise, communicate, cooperate, and collaborate.

  • As Eckhart Tolle observes, “Where there is anger, there is always pain.” Work with a therapist to work through the emotional part of your divorce. Never use your children or your attorney as a sounding board or therapist.

  • Do things that make your forget about your anger. Some people going through divorce take up a new hobby, meditate, lose themselves in helping others, exercise, or simply take a walk in big sky country.

Is it in Your Best Interests to Work with a Montana Divorce Lawyer?

Yes. Your best representative during your divorce is a professional who is experienced and well versed in Montana family law and divorce law as well as someone who can negotiate assertively and view your personal situation objectively.

After all, if you make a mistake and give up any marital rights during divorce, you lose them forever.

How to Find and Select a Montana Divorce Attorney

Only hire an attorney who will respect and share the principles of compromise, communicate, cooperate, and collaborate.

Do a Google search for “How to Find a Montana Divorce Attorney”. Then, check out each attorney website and narrow your list of potential attorneys down to a few who:

  • Focus their practice on divorce law and family law.
  • Emphasize mediation or otherwise working cooperatively with your spouse’s attorney.

Interview a few attorneys. It’s okay to ask questions about fees, procedures, what you can expect, the timeline, and anything else on your mind.

Then, hire the attorney you are most comfortable working with.

How to Prepare to Work with Your Divorce Attorney

Here’s your divorce preparation list. Check each item off the list when it has been completed.

  • I am sure that reconciliation efforts have been exhausted.
  • I have made an appointment with a therapist to deal with my emotions and upset related to the divorce.
  • I have collected financial documentation such as tax returns and financial statements.
  • If I have a prenuptial agreement, I have copied it for my attorney.
  • I have made a list of all assets, expenses, debts, and income.
  • I have made a list of everything that is important to me and prioritized those items.
    • Child custody schedule
    • Pet custody
    • Debt repayment responsibility
    • Spousal support
    • Child support
    • Personal property division
    • The house
    • Financial asset division
  • I have made a list of questions and concerns.

If you kick a stone in anger, you’ll hurt your own foot.

~Korean Proverb

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