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The first order that the court will issue is the Interim Order. This is a form order - there is nothing in it that is particular to you or your case. The Interim Order will say that neither party can do anything to harm the financial assets of the parties during the course of the divorce.


What does the Interim Order say?

The Interim Order generally says that neither of you may do the following unless the other party agrees:

  1. Cancel health insurance

  2. Cancel utilities (electricity, oil, gas, etc.)

  3. Change the beneficiary on life insurance or wills

  4. Sell or give anything valuable away

  5. Take on any unusual debt

  6. Take the children out of Vermont for more than 48 hours


What can I do after the Interim Order?

The basic rule is that you can do everything that you would normally do if you weren't getting divorced, but you can't spend money on unusual things during the divorce. If you need to put the groceries on the credit card, that's fine. If you need to get your car fixed, that's fine too. Just don't upgrade your car or sell it, or take a trip to Vegas, unless the other party agrees to it.


TIP:  If you need to spend money during the divorce for something big (a new car, or replacing the roof on the marital home, for example), ask the other party to give you a written note to show that they agree to this. An email is fine.

Additional common questions about the Interim Order:

  1. I need to move out of the house during the divorce. Can I rent an apartment?

  2. Can I hire a lawyer during the divorce? Can I withdraw money from our account to pay the retainer fee?

  3. I don't have any income. Can I put gas and groceries on a credit card during the divorce?

  4. I want my spouse to know how upset this makes me. Can I sell his truck and take a vacation to Europe?

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