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Financial Tips If You're Planning to Divorce

by Sharon Jackson  on November 18, 2020 under 

People often plan their wedding for months and even years and create a financial plan together for what type of wedding they can afford, and how they're going to pay for it. Unfortunately, most people put far more attention into planning for their wedding and life together than planning for their divorce, and their two separate lives and households. The simple fact is, two households cannot live as cheaply as one.

Divorce is complicated both emotionally and financially. The cost of a divorce can be very expensive, and post-divorce there is frequently a need to change your lifestyle even for wealthy couples. Here are three financial tips to help you prepare for divorce.

3 Financial Tips to Help You Prepare For Divorce

1. Track Your Expenses
Start a detailed list of your weekly, monthly, annual and occasional or one-time expenses are today, and what you expect your expenses to be after your divorce.

    • Will you need a new car in the next 5 years?
    • Do you have children who will require tutors or sports trainers 5 or 10 years from now ie during high school?
    • Do you travel regularly to visit grandparents in another state?
    • Will you need to move after your divorce?
    • If you are returning to work after a period of staying home with the children, will you need childcare?
    • Are there family holidays or sports activities or other leisure activities to plan for?
    • Will the children have jobs in high school or college to pay for expenses, will you need student loans?

While you're tracking your expenses, you also need to track your debts:

    • Is there a mortgage on your home?
    • Do you or your spouse have student loans?
    • Are there business loans taken to support a family business or your spouse's profession?
    • Do you have a car loan, vacation home or boat or other expense?

You need to understand how much your current life costs, and how much your future life will cost. I

2. Gather Your Financial Records

Do you have a financial advisor? If so, do you know the advisor, and have you met with them to discuss your finances? Is your name on all the accounts? Are statements mailed to you?

    • Gather your recent credit card statements, bank account records, 401ks, and investment portfolio to document your income versus your current and projected expenses.
    • Make a list of all your assets - both assets that are yours, your spouses and shared assets as well as assets you and your spouse held prior to your marriage.
    • Do you and your spouse own a business together? Does your spouse own a business but you regularly work for the business at home or in an office? Find documentation to prove your involvement in a family business or your spouse's profession.
    • Who handles your taxes?

3. Don't Make Major Financial Decisions
Experts recommend you not make major financial decisions after the death of a spouse for at least 6 months. In many ways divorce is like a death - it is the end of a marriage.

Don't rush to take your soon-to-be-ex-spouse out of your will, or remove them as the beneficiary of your will or retirement savings without consulting with your divorce attorney. Making big changes to your financial situation without consulting your spouse during the divorce process could negatively impact the outcome of your divorce.

Money and Divorce

Money and divorce is a difficult subject, especially for the spouse who has not taken financial control during the marriage. Many divorcing couples benefit from hiring a financial planner to help them fully understand their financial picture. If you're concerned your spouse will make major financial decisions during your divorce without consulting you, advise your attorney so that proper precautions can be taken.

If you don't trust your spouse's history with finances, a forensic accountant can assist your divorce attorney during a settlement or custody dispute. A forensic accountant is very helpful if you and your spouse go to court to settle financial disputes involving your divorce. A forensic accountant has specialized training on how to examine personal and business financial records to determine if information is being withheld or hidden, or if there are incomplete or fraudulent financial records. They can also help you value assets you or your spouse may own, such as property, artwork, collections or a business.

A Gwinnett County Divorce Attorney Protects You

An experienced divorce lawyer can give you peace of mind, knowing that an expert is dealing with your legal issues and helping you navigate a stressful period of your life. There are many decisions to be made regarding the division of assets, alimony, child support and other legal issues that are decided in court.

If you are in Gwinnett County or surrounding areas, call Divorce Attorney Sharon Jackson. As an experienced Family Law attorney, she has effectively fought for the rights of parents and helped them protect their children’s future. Call Attorney Jackson today at (678) 436-3636 to schedule a consultation. You may also contact Attorney Sharon Jackson through our online form.

 

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