4 Tips to Follow DURING a Divorce for Financial Success AFTER a Divorce
Aside from the emotional aspect, divorce is about two things, children (if applicable), and division of assets and debts. Money – that is what divorce comes down to. Here are some quick and helpful tips to follow during your divorce which will help you long-term after the divorce.
- Quick tip #1—Avoid the “get me out NOW” approach – granted if you are in the process of divorce, you most likely didn’t reach this decision overnight. You are more than ready for it to be over, we understand. The mid-divorce you may not care you if are “giving” your spouse 75% of your marital estate just so you can reach a quick conclusion and be rid of this person. The post-divorce you will care if your divorce settlement is not fair and equitable. Sometimes fair and equitable can mean a few more months being married while you accurately divide the entire estate.
- Quick Tip #2—Be conscious of legal fees – while also being thorough with divorce property division. What can you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse negotiate and agree upon in terms of property division without the assistance of your attorney(s)? What is worth accruing legal fees for? There are the few individuals that would prefer to pay funds to an attorney rather than see the other party be awarded those funds – but those are a rare special type of divorcing spouse. Don’t be one of them. Do not dwindle the marital estate on legal fees to lower the amount your spouse receives – this means you will receive less too, and post-divorce you will not be appreciative of that.
- Quick Tip #3—Plan for finances after the divorce – set yourself up for financial success after your divorce. If you have been accustomed to a dual-income household, you will need to create a new budget. When budgeting, make sure you are aware of exactly what debts/expenses you are being awarded in your divorce settlement, as well as those awarded to your spouse. Include provisions in your decree or prior to entering your decree to require your spouse to refinance the mortgage (if he/she is keeping the house) so you are not liable in the future if your ex-spouse defaults on the mortgage. Same goes for car loans.
- Quick Tip #4—Review credit cards and lines of credit – plan for finances and your financial future. Check all credit cards and lines of credit to see if your name is on those accounts. Close joint accounts and credit cards. You may have a decree stating that your ex-spouse is to be responsible for a certain credit card, but unless your name is removed, or the account is closed, expect phone calls, hassle, and most likely a hit to your credit if your ex-spouse does not hold up their end of the payments post-divorce.