Jill Biden recently appeared on Kelly Clarkson’s show and gave some motherly advice on dealing with divorce as she reflected on her own experience as a divorcée.

If you weren’t aware, the First Lady of the United States was actually married for five years before she got divorced and met President Joe Biden. She knows a thing or two about dealing with divorce, and that’s what makes her advice so great.

Divorce is understandably a time of emotional turmoil, and it can take years before you fully heal. Let’s go over what the First Lady said to Clarkson and then go through some actionable steps you can take if you’re going through a divorce in California.

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What Jill Biden Told Kelly Clarkson About Divorce

Dr. Jill Biden recently appeared on “The Kelly Clarkson Show” for her first one-on-one television interview since the election. During the interview, she touched on a very personal issue for many—healing after a divorce.

Clarkson filed for divorce from her husband and father of her two kids, Brandon Blackstock, last June. Jill Biden isn’t a stranger to divorce; before she married President Joe Biden in 1977, she was married to Bill Stevenson for five years. They divorced in 1975. Jill told Clarkson she’s grateful for her previous marriage because it ultimately led her to Joe.

“I look back at it now, and I think, you know, if I hadn’t gotten divorced, I never would’ve met Joe. I wouldn’t have the beautiful family I have now. So I really think things happen for the best,” she said.

Jill cited her late mother’s comforting advice and told Clarkson that these things happen for a reason.

“I want to tell you, Kelly, this is what I would say to you if I were your mother,” Jill Biden said. “You know, my mother always said to me, ‘Things are going to look better tomorrow,’ and if you can take one day at a time, things will get better.”

The singer and talk-show host has been open about the pain of her recent split after seven years of marriage. She had two children with her estranged husband: six-year-old daughter River and four-year-old son Remington. Their candid conversation about divorce is quite relatable. You can watch a clip of Clarkson’s interview with Jill Biden here.

Their divorce stories are hardly unique; there are over 750,000 divorces recorded in the country every year. Americans are divorcing at a rate of 2.9 persons per 1,000 people. While fewer people are marrying now then before 1990, divorces among people aged 50+ are rising.

Perhaps the First Lady is right; things will look better tomorrow. But it definitely helps to prepare for the divorce process. So, let’s go over the steps everyone considering divorce needs to go through.

Steps to Take When Preparing for Divorce

If you’re going through what Jill Biden and Kelly Clarkson went through, then you’re probably wondering what steps to take. A divorce checklist can help you lay out a plan with actionable steps to get the most from the process.

The internet can bring a plethora of information on what you should do with a few keystrokes. However, it can be overwhelming, and some information may be inaccurate. Who do you turn to help? A divorce attorney might not be an option when you consider their premium rate. But there are other affordable options, including a legal document preparation service. Let’s go over what you need to do now.

1. Gather All Your Financial Documents and Information

Create a spreadsheet with information about all bank accounts and financial investments you and your spouse share. This includes checking and savings accounts, insurance policies, retirement and/or pension funds, and any investments.

Note which ones are joint accounts and which ones are individual accounts. A “separate” bank account is only protected if it was separate for the whole length of the marriage. Income earned during the marriage is “community” property and will be shared 50/50.

2. Separate Joint Accounts

While you’re gathering your financial information, it may be a good time to immediately separate yourself from any joint accounts you have with your spouse. Maybe they aren’t the type of person to swoop in and drain all the accounts, but you never know with divorce—it can bring out the worst in people.

Call your bank and put a freeze on individual withdrawals on a joint account. But make sure you tell your spouse about it first, so they aren’t surprised when they go to the ATM or bank. This is also a good point to discuss dividing assets with your spouse. You might need the help of a mediator to reach an agreement.

3. Make an Inventory of Major Assets You Share

Once you have a spreadsheet of your finances ready, add a column for all your joint assets. This includes stuff like investment property, homes, cars, boats, antiques, jewelry, and artwork. A prenup should outline all the assets. If there isn’t one, it is in your best interest to decide who gets what as amicably as possible. Otherwise, a court will decide based on state law, and both you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse may come off worse than if you negotiated yourselves.

4. Consider Professional Assistance

There may be points in the divorce discussion when you need professional legal advice. Hiring an attorney can be tricky. Unless you have unlimited funds, you need to know the average hourly rate for divorce attorneys in California is $350+, with some charging up to $500 per hour. Fortunately, there are more cost-effective options like a paralegal or a legal document assistant.

Affordable Help IS Available

You don’t need to go through the necessary divorce steps on your own. There is help available, and it doesn’t have to cost a kidney. Contact A People’s Choice to start your divorce. Our team of legal document assistants can help bring order to the chaos of procedure. Call us today!

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