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When it comes to divorce, there are a number of errors that spouses can make during the various steps of the process. While some of these missteps are obvious, many others are not, and it is the rare divorced person who would say that they would not go back and change at least a few of their decisions if they could. For those in Washington who are preparing to file for divorce, the following tips could greatly improve the overall experience and the eventual bottom line.

Perhaps the most important tip is to adequately prepare. This means fully documenting the financial situation of each party and the family as a whole. Income, assets and debts should be assessed, and documentation of these accounts is imperative. By gathering this information at the outset of the process, parties are not only better prepared to negotiate, they are also likely to limit the legal fees that can add up when attorneys do not have all of the information needed to move forward.

Another financial concern involves being able to accurately identify the true value of various assets. There can be a vast difference in value between an asset as it sits and after it has been liquidated. Understanding the projected value of each asset will help spouses tailor their negotiation strategy to best meet their individual goals. In this arena, it is often a good move to consult with financial advisors or tax professionals to determine the value and carrying or liquidation costs associated with each asset.

As with any major financial undertaking, Washington spouses should ensure that they have a comprehensive understanding of the ramifications of each possible choice before moving forward in the divorce negotiation process. It is understandable to want the process to end as quickly as possible. However, the decisions made now will have lasting effects, and it is worth the time and effort to make well-informed decisions that serve one's future goals.