Preparing for divorce also means preparing your finances. Money is an integral part of your marriage and one that you will need to uncouple from your soon-to-be ex. Divorce itself can also be expensive, so understanding your financial situation and saving for your future is something you’ll want to plan ahead for.
In this blog series on the dos and don’ts of divorce, we’ve discussed how to avoid post-judgment issues and how to uncouple your assets. In this post, we discuss important steps to take to prepare financially for divorce, including paying attention to these dos and don’ts.
DO spend time getting organized.
One of your first steps in getting organized financially should be to gather a list of all of your and your spouse’s financial accounts (to the extent that you know) in one place. This includes obtaining copies of financials statements and tax records and gaining a solid understanding of your income and expenses – even better if you can anticipate future ones.
In some relationships, one partner tends to be the primary person responsible for money. If this is not you, you should dedicate time to getting educated on important steps to take to protect your financial future and consider talking to a financial advisor.
DO apply for a credit card account in your own name (and a bank account too).
With financial changes on the horizon with divorce, prepare ahead by taking out a credit card in your own name. Opening new credit card accounts can be more difficult immediately following a divorce. While you are at it, be sure to also open your own bank account and start saving money for the divorce and your future.
DON’T take on any big financial commitments.
Resist taking on any major financial commitments, especially those that would be shared with your spouse. If a purchase requires both of your incomes, it’s best to wait. Now is the time to be conservative with your money and save wherever you can.
DON’T make assumptions about the outcome of your divorce proceedings.
While you may have a strong case (we’ll be sure of that) and think you understand how the judge may rule on the financial division of your marital property, don’t rest on your laurels and assume the arrangement with your ex will work out. Keep saving. Keep making smart financial decisions. Even court-ordered financial arrangements sometimes need to be modified post-judgment.
Money can be a hotly contested issue with divorce. Plan ahead. Get organized. And get help if you need it. Knowing what’s to come helps you begin making smart preparations today. For guidance on all of your Florida family law questions and help preparing for and navigating divorce, come talk to us at the Vasquez de Lara Law Group.