If a spouse suspects that divorce might be eminent, that person must gather bank statements and investment account numbers and tax returns, which will allow the spouse to fully understand the family’s finances. Additionally, a spouse should obtain credit reports to determine how much marital debt exists because debts are the subject of property division during divorce.
When it comes time to divide property and assets, it is important for spouses to know what they really want and what they can use to trade for property or asset they want. Property division can be settled amicably if both spouses are willing to hear each others’ thoughts and concerns.
If there are children involved, spouses should discuss how they will handle big expenses, including college, summer camp and braces. Failure to do so can lead to financial hardships especially if only one parent will shoulder all of those costly expenses.
To ensure that everything is in order, a spouse should make a checklist to determine which issues have been settled and which ones will be discussed in the next meeting.
Finally, a spouse should ensure that the person’s rights are protected throughout the process. By taking these steps people can protect their finances and get a head start on their new life.
Source: CNN, “Don’t let divorce wreck your finances,” Karen Cheney, April 4, 2014