What to bring when meeting your Divorce Lawyer in Singapore
There are several documents that you should bring with you to your first meeting with your divorce lawyer. You should bring the documents that the court requires in the two stages of divorce proceedings (the main proceedings, which will lead to a grant of an interim divorce order, and the ancillary proceedings, which deal with matters such as division of matrimonial assets, maintenance and child custody, and leads to a final judgement).
Any personal information you provide your lawyer will be kept in the lawyer’s confidence, and will only be used in relation to the divorce proceedings.
Documents necessary in all divorce matters
You should bring the following documents to your first meeting with your lawyer, no matter what stage you are at in your divorce proceedings:
– your personal identification card (or passport, should you be a foreigner);
– your spouse’s personal identification card (or passport, should your spouse be a foreigner);
– your marriage certificate; and
– any birth certificates of the children of your marriage (if any).
Documents to bring before commencement of divorce proceedings
You should bring the following documents to your first meeting with your lawyer if you have yet to commence divorce proceedings:
– documents relating to the particulars of your marriage, which should include the duration of your marriage;
– documents relating to the particulars of you and your spouse, which should include your ages, citizenships, addresses, education levels, and occupations; and
– documents relating to your children (if any), which should include the medical reports of any children suffering from any chronic illnesses or disabilities.
Documents to bring before the first stage of divorce proceedings
The first stage of divorce proceedings deals with the divorce itself. In order for the court to grant a divorce, the court must be satisfied that the marriage between you and your spouse has irretrievably broken down.
As such, you will need to bring with you documents which can serve as evidence of the following facts which can serve to convince the court that your marriage has irretrievably broken down:
– that your spouse has committed adultery, and that you find it intolerable to live with your spouse;
– that your spouse has acted in a way so unreasonable that you cannot be expected to live with your spouse;
– that your spouse has deserted you for a continuous period of at least two years immediately preceding your filing for divorce, and your spouse has an intention to desert you; or
– that you and your spouse have been living separately for a continuous period of at least three years (in the case of an uncontested divorce), or at least four years (in the case of a contested divorce).
Documents which can serve as the aforementioned evidence of irretrievable breaking down of a marriage can include:
– reports from private investigators (particularly in cases of adultery);
– correspondence between you and your spouse;
– medical reports (if you have been the victim of domestic abuse at the hands of your spouse); or
– a Deed of Separation or a judgement of judicial separation.
Documents to bring before the second stage of divorce proceedings
The second stage of divorce proceedings deals with matters ancillary to the divorce itself. These matters can include:
– the division of matrimonial assets
– the maintenance of a spouse;
– the maintenance of any children of the marriage; and
– custody, care and control, and access to any children of the marriage.
In relation to matters concerning the division of your matrimonial assets, you should bring the documents which relate to both assets which you own by yourself, as well as assets which you own jointly with your spouse, which may include:
– housing loan documentation;
– CPF statements relating to CPF contributions to a Housing Development Board flat (if applicable);
– renovation receipts;
– bank statements;
– credit card statements;
– income tax documents;
– valuation reports (if applicable); and
– insurance policy documentation (if applicable).
You should compile a list of all the above mentioned assets, along with the estimated value of the same, and the basis of such a valuation.
The court will consider the financial capabilities of both you and your spouse when deciding whether or not to give, and how much to give in, an order or maintenance. As such, you should bring documents relating to both you and your spouse. These documents may include:
– both parties’ payslips;
– both parties’ CPF statements;
– evidence of both parties’ employment (where applicable), such as employment contracts or letters from employers;
– both parties’ income tax documents;
– both parties’ bank statements; and
– documents relating to both parties’ debts.
You should also bring the documents which relate to or can serve as evidence of your and/or your children’s monthly expenses (where applicable).
It should be noted that this article only outlines some of the documents which you will likely be asked by your lawyer to prepare and bring. Upon engagement, your divorce lawyer will likely inform you of exactly what to bring to your first meeting with him/her.
How Can We Help You
Commencing a divorce is a delicate issues and may be too technical for you to fully understand alone. We understand that going through such an event in your life is difficult and emotional. Worry not, at I.R.B. Law; we have experienced divorce lawyers who are well versed in family law proceedings in Singapore. We will be able to guide you and explain to you how you are able to protect your interest.
Contact us today to receive advice on how your matter may be handled. Our first consultation is usually free as we wish to focus on you and not on your wallet. Do not hesitate to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at +65 6589 8913 to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced lawyers today.