Divorce is never easy, but second divorces are rife with complications well beyond those that plague first divorces. Highlighted below are a few of the many differences between first and second divorces.
Prior support and alimony commitments come into play.
Divorce can be financially devastating the first time around, but a second divorce is even more complicated in terms of finances. If your first divorce was relatively recent, you may find yourself paying to support multiple children or multiple ex-spouses.
Children from the first marriage need more support than ever.
Going through one divorce can be traumatic for a child, but a second divorce can be even more devastating. Keeping this in mind, it is important to keep second divorces as peaceful and drama-free as possible so as to minimize the impact on children.
Name changes are even more complicated.
If you changed your name when you got married the first time, you may not have hesitated to change it back after getting divorced — or you may have kept the same name for the sake of your marriage. A second divorce can further complicate matters, particularly if you have children from both marriages.
Maintaining relationships with stepchildren can be difficult.
If your second spouse has kids from a previous relationship, it’s likely that you developed a close and loving relationship with those kids. Any visits with your second spouse’s children may only be arranged with his or her consent. If you adopted these children, you have the duty and right to custody arrangements and support of the children. In general, you will have to fight to maintain a positive relationship with your stepchildren.
Your second divorce can be easier than the first.
Despite the aforementioned complications, a second divorce can actually be far easier than the initial divorce, primarily because you have a good idea what to expect. Additionally, if you’ve been through the hassle of litigation, you may be more willing to pursue mediation or collaboration.
Given the sensitive nature of second divorces, consider working with a knowledgeable and compassionate Washington D.C. attorney.