If you’re facing an impending divorce, you’re not alone.
A significant number of marriages in the United States end in divorce.
This is not to mean that divorce is not a messy experience.
Yes, it is as no one ties the note with an intention to get divorced.
Even while we want to hope for the best, it’s only fair to remain prepared if the unexpected happens.
That’s why it is advisable to begin the process of protecting your assets as early as possible.
After all, your assets and property will be at the center of discussion during the divorce.
Here we shall give you tips on how to safeguard your finances during a divorce.
Qualified Domestic Relations Order
You’ve probably heard about QDRO, right?
This is an order entered as a part of property division in a divorce and is such a niche area of divorce law that consulting a QDRO lawyer is strongly advised.
This legal document often gives the spouse fifty percent of the value of the assets they obtained when married.
When that is done, your ex will be required to pay any due taxes.
This is not the case if QDRO is not there, as the account holder will continue to pay the taxes on all the assets (including those transferred).
Of course, QDRO has some limitations, so it’s best to talk to a qualified lawyer to help you out.
Open Personal banking Accounts
If you have a bank account in your name, the better.
If you don’t, open both a savings and checking account.
After this, inform your partner about it and let them know the amount of money you plan to deposit in those accounts.
When your spouse is aware of these accounts, they won’t accuse you of hiding marital monies.
Remember, you’ll need money for attorneys when you separate.
What’s more, you might need to look for a new home if you don’t have one already.
To be safer, don’t file for a divorce until you’ve accrued enough money for legal fees and about three month’s expenses.
Have a Premarital Agreement
A premarital agreement is vital in a divorce.
It is a written contract that specifies how the assets will be shared after the divorce.
What’s more, it defines each person’s responsibility after the divorce, including the children.
A premarital agreement must include:
- The agreement is written and signed
- Reasonable closure
- Attorney involvement for both parties
- Not structured to encourage divorce
- Couples must not disregard the agreement during the marriage
Consider a Mediator
Since you will pay a substantial amount of money to divorce attorneys, it’s essential to choose your battles carefully.
After all, you will not want to pay more money to your attorney than what you’re trying to reclaim.
In a divorce settlement, everything can be divided. As such, it’s essential to gather all evidence before filing a divorce.
To avoid paying hefty fees to your attorney, consider using a mediator.
You will avoid hefty legal fees and still facilitate your divorce agreement.
Know Your State Laws
Different state laws govern each state. Before you file a divorce petition, take time to learn about your state laws.
Some states like California, Washington, and Texas are governed by community state laws.
That means your jointly owned property could be divided by half in a divorce.
In such states, assets and debts incurred earned by either spouse are divided by half.
Even so, property under one spouse’s name, whether a gift, inheritance, or anything owned before marriage, will not be considered.
Document Your Valuables Before Filing a Petition
It’s also imperative that you get evidence of assets before you start the divorce proceedings.
Take a picture of all your valuable possessions. Also, make a copy of your financial statement.
Keep that evidence in a safe place where you’re sure to get them when needed.
Get a Financial Advisor
Hiring an attorney is an excellent thing, but it’s not enough.
Getting an experienced and trusted financial advisor will come in handy.
This should be a priority if your spouse were in charge of the money.
A good financial advisor will help you understand your financial situation and how you can protect your assets.
We recommend hiring a financial advisor even if you’re experienced with money issues.
That way, they will speak on your behalf to ensure you’re well represented.
The last thing you will want to do is get your emotions to take hold of such an important matter.
As you can see, there are many steps to protect your assets in a divorce.
Whatever the reason for your divorce, ensure to know what you want after the divorce and find the best attorneys to represent you.