Divorce is an expensive endeavor. You need to prepare your finances for divorce before you’ve even started the process. Both you and your partner should have representation by an attorney that will be able to help you navigate the divorce. You’ll want to start tracking your spending before you even begin proceedings. Next, you’ll want to gather documentation for everything finance-related. And it’s always a good idea to wait to make big financial decisions until the divorce is finalized. Preparing ahead of time will hopefully help make your divorce less complicated and less drawn-out.
Prepare Your Finances for Divorce: Get Everything in Order
Find an Attorney
The first step to prepare your finances for divorce is to enlist the help of an experienced attorney. Every aspect of divorce is confusing and complicated. But the financials can be especially overwhelming. An attorney will help you navigate all the decisions, and might bring up things that you wouldn’t have even known to ask for. Hopefully, you’ll only go through the divorce process one time, so you’ll want somebody with tons of experiences on your side representing your best interests.
Track Your Budget
Before you even begin the process you should prepare your finances for divorce by tracking your budget and spending. You can start this before you’ve even told your partner you want a divorce. Keep a list of money coming in and money going out for several months so that you have a good sense of where every dime goes each month. You don’t need to change your spending habits, just track them. And remember to include things that seem like one-time expenses like car repairs or a broken refrigerator. Tracking your budget will give your attorney a great overview of your spending and will allow them to know how to best represent your interests. It will also help the judge determine how to split your assets.
The next step you want to take to prepare your finances for divorce is to gather evidence of your assets. You’ll want records of your bank accounts, mortgages, investments, and statements. If your divorce is not an amicable one, your partner may try to hide these documents from you. So it’s best to prepare as early as possible and gather all of this early in the proceedings. Know that banks and other institutions are allowed to tell your spouse that you’ve asked for the info if you share the accounts. You’ll give all of this to your attorney so they can get a clear picture of your financial history.
Wait to Make Financial Decisions
Finally, an important tip to remember when you want to prepare your finances for divorce is to wait to make big financial decisions until it’s over. This is because you won’t really know how your assets will be divided until the process has ended. Therefore, you might have more or less money to use on financial decisions than you thought. You’ll also want to wait to change any wills, beneficiary documents, and insurance policies until after the divorce is finalized.
The prospect of going through a divorce is daunting, but it is helpful to prepare your finances for divorce as soon as you can. Enlist the help of an attorney early on. They’ll be able to help you navigate the process. It’s a great idea to start tracking your budget before you’ve even approached the subject with your spouse. You’ll also want to gather any documentation of your finances. And finally, remember not to make big financial decisions or changes until after the divorce is over. That way, you’ll know how everything shakes out and will know where you stand financially. Hopefully, with these tips, you’ll be able to handle the financial aspects of divorce without being overwhelmed.