Divorce can be overwhelming, stressful, and emotionally draining. In spite of this, it is vital to stay organized and inventory your financial situation. This will help you to avoid common financial mistakes people make during divorce and secure your financial future.
The following contains helpful information about finances and divorce but is by no means a substitute for the advice of an experienced divorce attorney and an excellent financial planner.
Make a list of all marital income, assets, and debts. You must have a firm grasp on your finances and liabilities before making informed decisions as to how these can be divided between you and your spouse.
When you make your inventory of assets, include values where appropriate. Approximate values are sufficient for some items as your case begins, but you may need appraisals if your spouse disagrees with your estimations. You will need copies of financial statements for checking, savings, retirement, investment, or other accounts.
The same is true for debts. Gather any statements for outstanding mortgages, loans, and credit cards. If you do not manage the household finances, request this information from your spouse. If they are not forthcoming, or you believe your spouse is hiding assets or debts, ask your attorney for assistance.
You will be required to estimate your monthly spending and living costs upon separation. This is extremely important for cases where alimony is a factor, so do not guess!
All property is not equal even if it has the same face value. A retirement account and marital home may have similar worth; however, there may be tax consequences associated with dividing a retirement account.
Always consider the long-term financial implications of dividing any asset and seek professional advice if you are unsure of any tax liability.
Do not hold on to a marital home that you cannot afford. Your marital home may hold precious memories, but if you cannot realistically maintain the mortgage, property, and taxes, it is time to move on.
Spouses divide marital assets and marital debts in a divorce. Regardless of your divorce agreement or final order, if your spouse defaults on their payments, a creditor or collection agency can come after you. There are very few exceptions to this.
The best way to avoid future problems is to pay off marital debts before your divorce is final.
Do not try to manage your divorce alone. Navigating the family court system, preparing and filing divorce documents, and attending divorce hearings without an experienced Chandler divorce attorney are a recipe for disaster. Divorce attorneys can save you time, money, and frustration.
Have your divorce questions answered by a legal professional today. Reach out to Wilson-Goodman Law Group, PLLC, for practical, honest advice you can rely on.