Love can be all rosy and filled with the promise of a life companion so much so that the mere thought of a breakup or divorce feels silly. Our hearts are set on happily ever after after all! 

    Unfortunately, happily ever after does not always happen and that is okay. This article gives tips to help you get your finances in check before checking out of an unfortunate situation. When faced with healing a broken heart and determining the next chapter of life, thinking about how to financially protect yourself in a divorce (other money matters) can make the whole process that much more stressful.

Here are SIX ways to protect your assets during the difficult experience of going through a divorce: 

LEGALIZE THE SEPARATION/DIVORCE

         Once you make the decision to divorce,  you have to get the train moving. It is time to put the separation in writing and in motion. This serves a purpose financially. It helps protect any money you make after that date. So, if you are separated from your partner eight months before divorce proceedings begin, all of that income is solely yours. If you do not make the separation legally binding, then that money could be subject to being split down the middle. This date also applies to decisions involving child support and alimony

 

GET A COPY OF AND MONITOR YOUR CREDIT REPORT

Commingling your incomes and sharing accounts during the marriage, exposes you to your partner’s actions. Even if your spouse was (and is) a trustworthy person, it doesn’t mean mistakes weren’t made. Anything that they did to hurt their credit score could have damaged yours as well. This makes it necessary to get a copy of your credit report, and go through it  with a fine-toothed comb. Check your report for errors and continuously monitor to make sure your partners actions do not affect your future.

 

SEPARATE YOUR DEBT TO FINANCIALLY PROTECT YOUR ASSETS 

You are liable for any debt your spouse racks up on jointly held accounts. It is best to leave your marriage with zero debt, or only the debt that is yours. If you have the money to pay off your joint debts, do so and then close the accounts.

  You want to avoid keeping joint accounts. Even with a verbal agreement to pay, if your partner disappears on you, you will be left to pay the balance. 

  

SPLIT JOINT BANK BALANCES 

As soon as possible, open up a new bank account, and transfer 50 percent of the available funds to your new account. You should also ensure that any income from employment or other applicable direct deposits are deposited into your new account. When you are on the way to being unmarried, it is best to untie all accounts and revoke privileges your spouse was entitled to.

COMB THROUGH YOUR ASSETS

When separating assets, some couples become overly emotional. Emotions tend to be heightened even more in situations where a marriage ended due to infidelity or some sort of grave disruption of trust.

          As much as possible, try to set aside any feelings of guilt or retribution. Doing so will help you keep a clear, logical head and allow you to speak up for and defend what is yours. Getting a thorough and accurate understanding of what you are entitled to requires going through all of your assets — line by line. You can contact a legal advisor to put you through local laws as regards this.

WHAT DO YOU WANT?

         Do some soul searching to identify two or three key financial matters to help focus negotiations. For example; Do you want the children’s fees paid for by your spouse? Want spousal support for a certain number of years so you can go back to school and change careers or sharpen your skills? Do you want the family home?

        To make the best of a bad situation, come to the table with a clear idea of the things that are most valuable to you

Get more tips on how to take financial matters into your hands HERE!!

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