Regardless of your reason for divorce, it's imperative to turn your immediate attention to your finances. Neglecting to do so early on in the process can result in additional challenges in the future.
Here are five of the most important things you can do:
- Gather all financial records: Not only are these necessary for the divorce process itself, but they will also help you better understand your financial situation. Financial records commonly include paystubs, tax statements, retirement account statements and bank account statements.
- Make a list of assets and debts: A property division checklist will help you separate individual and marital property. Just the same, a list of your debts will provide a clear idea of what you may have to take on as part of your divorce settlement.
- Open your own accounts: Gone are the days of using joint accounts. It's time to open your own, as this gives you full control over your finances. For example, open your own checking account, savings account and credit card.
- Review your expenses: Knowing your current expenses will allow you to adjust them accordingly for future financial stability. Since your household income is likely to change, it's critical to know exactly what you can afford each month.
- Get professional help: There are many types of professionals who can assist you when preparing your finances for divorce. In addition to a family law attorney, consult with a financial planner and your tax professional. There's a good chance you're overlooking something of importance, but these professionals can provide all the guidance you need.
The moment you decide to divorce is the moment you should turn your attention to these five details. It may take some time to get everything in order, but it's well worth it in the end.
As the process begins, continue to review these details to ensure that you're on the right track. For example, if you have reason to believe your soon-to-be ex-spouse is hiding assets, review your asset checklist to refresh your memory.
With proper preparation and knowledge of your legal rights, you put yourself in position to minimize your stress during every phase of your divorce.
Visit our website for more advice on all aspects of the divorce process in Minnesota.