A divorce can be financially devastating for both parties as well as causing emotional pain and strained relations with children. However, there are some ways you can protect yourself financially during and after a divorce.
Some researchers suggest divorced spouses would require more than a 30 percent increase in their income to keep the same standard of living they had before to their divorce.
There are some ways you can protect yourself financially. Knowing your obligations and rights can help.
Knowing your rights and obligations and ultimately how best to protect yourself can make it less expensive and a little less painful.
Here are some tips to protect you financially.
1 Pay Child Support
The wellbeing of children, including their financial wellbeing, should be the responsibility of both parents.
Often former spouses fear the custodial ex-spouse is squandering child support and may seek to withhold it.
Parents have a legal obligation to pay child support. However, only half of all support as ordered by the courts in the United States is paid and only half of that figure is paid in full. Failure to pay child support will likely have further ramifications such as your earnings being withheld and possible loss of your drivers’ license, the denial of hunting and fishing licenses and, denial of passport applications.
2 Conserve Money
The period during or just after a divorce is not the best one to make major purchases. You may find unexpected costs you had not budgeted for. Make savings where you can until you are back on your feet again.
3 Document Assets
It makes sense to document assets during and after a divorce. People who are separated or divorced should track and document all of their potential assets. Find all relevant legal documents, and familiarizing yourself with any joint and individual financial portfolios.
Spouses often collect evidence during temporary separations before officially filing for divorce. You should make sure to have all important documents before you are divorced because it may be difficult to obtain them afterward.
4 Get Property Valued As Soon as Possible
Almost all property is fair game during a divorce. However, spouses need to know the value of assets if they are to obtain their fair share.
Doing your homework is always key. If you go into divorce proceedings thinking a house is worth $120,000 when its actual value is $200,000, you will likely underestimate what you could likely obtain and will be in a position of ignorance. Appraise your assets and don’t guess their value.
Doing your homework ahead of time will put you in full possession of the facts.
5 Separate Assets
From the time of your separation, you should cancel all credit cards in a joint name and get new ones in your own name. Close credit accounts and set up bank accounts in your own name. Advise creditors of your change in marital status.
6 Consider the Direct and Indirect Consequences of Divorce
Divorce is one of the most fundamental things that can happen to you. It can have a more fundamental financial impact on your future than planning for retirement or buying a home. Too many people going through a divorce willingly give up what they are entitled to because it seems easier than fighting. You should talk to a financial planner and a divorce attorney to get the bigger picture.
If you and your spouse are unable to reach an amicable agreement about the terms of the divorce, you should consult an attorney.
The Law Office of Michael West can help you plan for life after divorce. Contact us today for a consultation.