Getting a divorce is no small feat. In addition to the emotional process of separating from your spouse, legally ending a marriage comes with mounds of paperwork, division of assets, settling of debts, and navigating a new future. This process can take months however, knowing how to prepare for a divorce can help things seem less overwhelming. Below, with the help of legal experts, we outlined nine steps to take when preparing for divorce.

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It is easier and less costly if you and your spouse are able to settle without litigation. "The simple idea is, don't spend 10 to get 5, both financially and emotionally," says Emily E. Rubenstein, a Beverly Hills, California-based divorce attorney. In other words, says family law attorney Sabrina Shaheen Cronin, "Attorneys should do a better job of counseling their clients to show them the pros and cons of ongoing litigation. For instance, if it costs $10,000 in attorneys’ fees to 'win' some assets worth $5,000, you would have been better off walking away from that asset and negotiating something else."

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