July 6, 2015

Post-Divorce Finances: The Basics

Division of Property, Divorce Trends, Illinois divorce lawyer, Illinois family law attorney

If you are going through a divorce, figuring out your financial future can be one of the most daunting prospects of the entire ordeal. Knowing exactly what you are dealing with can help to ensure that you are not left without options after your finances are separate. This can be especially important if you were not the primary breadwinner in the marriage—determining how you will become financially independent can be all the more difficult if you have not been financially secure in the past. Regardless, there are several things you can do to ensure that your finances are in order.

According to Forbes, preparing ahead of time is crucial. Understanding that your general net income will significantly decrease (whether you are the primary breadwinner in the family or not) is key. Your assets will be separated meaning that even secure holdings will lose value, and you may lose control of several of them. Taking the time to learn how to budget and invest your money is best done before the dissolution is finalized, but it is never too late to learn. Taking in to consideration taxes, living wills, and retirement plans is also important.

The first major step in figuring out your finances post-split is to retitle your non-retirement assets. It is worth taking a look at the deed to the family home, for example, even if you believe that the deed is in your name. If you change your name after divorce, you will need to change all important documentation such as this. In the same vein, be sure to remove your name from all shared accounts or credit cards. One common mistake that many newly-divorced people make is the failure to remove one’s name from shared accounts—and subsequently get saddled with an ex’s debt.

If you are considering divorce and interested in discussing your options for post-divorce finances, the most important thing to do at the onset of the process is to seek legal counsel. Do not go through it alone—working with a qualified attorney can help to save you time and money. Contact an experienced DuPage County divorce lawyer today.