>> Feb 3, 2016
The decision to divorce should never be entered into lightly. Whether your marriage fell into ill repair over the last few years or became irretrievably broken over a single event, there are a number of steps you should take if you ultimately decide to file for divorce.
Although a divorce is often an emotionally trying time, it is also an occasion to aggressively protect your financial interests. The financial ramifications of divorce can have lasting effects on your fiscal health. If you prepare for divorce ahead of time, you stand a better chance of securing an outcome that makes it easier for you to transition and begin rebuilding your life.
Start Collecting Records
While you still have access to bank statements, pay checks, tax returns, credit card bills, and other financial documents, make sure to gather them and keep them in a secure location. Identifying documents like social security cards, marriage licenses, and birth certificates are also helpful to collect at this point since you will need them when you proceed with your divorce.
Hire a Divorce Attorney
Before serving your spouse with divorce papers,speak with The Law Offices of Damian Nolan. They will advise you on what to expect as you enter a divorce including any additional steps you should take before filing. A divorce attorney will also work on your behalf to protect your financial interests. When you are ready to file, your attorney can help you draft your petition and be ready to take the next steps when your spouse answers your complaint.
Get a P.O. Box
To keep communications confidential prior to filing for divorce, make sure you route your mail to a different location. Opening a P.O. Box is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to ensure your privacy as you work with your lawyer in preparation for filing.
Set up Your Own Accounts
If you currently have joint accounts with your spouse, you will want to establish accounts in your name alone. This will give you the opportunity to deposit your paychecks into your own account and ensure your money is kept safe and secure. Depending on the state in which you live, your divorce attorney may also advise you to withdraw half of the money in any joint accounts you hold with your spouse.
At this point, you should also pull your credit report and note any recent account openings that you were not aware of. Continue to monitor your credit report for any unauthorized changes. Consider establishing your own credit outside of the marriage as a way to launch your financial independence separate of your spouse.
Keep Your Children in Mind
If you and your spouse have children together, always remember to keep their best interests in mind as you begin the divorce process. While you want to make sure you leave your divorce as financially stable as possible, you also want to keep your children as a main priority. Should your divorce result in a custody dispute, you will want to ensure you have acted in a manner that shows you as a responsible and suitable parent.