While divorce is certainly an emotional ordeal, it is also entangled with a couple’s finances. Even spouses who are financially comfortable may find themselves struggling in the months and years after a divorce if they do not plan and prepare before and during the divorce. In addition to protecting the large assets like a Pennsylvania business and property, it is important to deal with the day-to-day finances to minimize the chances of facing hardship because a spouse did not get a fair deal during asset division.
Organization is the key to any financial success, and it is especially important for someone heading for divorce. Making lists of incomes, assets, debts, and expenses and gathering documentation can facilitate divorce discussions and reduce the chances that important facts will be overlooked. It may also bring to light any hidden assets, income or debt that will affect property division. Other areas to consider include the following:
- Determining whether the length of the marriage qualifies one spouse for the other spouse’s Social Security benefits
- Establishing credit apart from one’s spouse
- Setting up an individual bank account
- Creating a post-divorce budget and remaining frugal while the divorce is in progress
- Learning how to minimize the negative impact the divorce will have on retirement accounts and other investments
Throughout the divorce process, it is important for one to carefully monitor how the other is spending marital funds. Any excessive spending or waste may ultimately affect the amount during asset division, which may impact one’s financial well-being moving forward. A skilled Pennsylvania legal advocate can be an invaluable benefit during this time.