How to Plan and Prepare for a Divorce

One of the major tasks involved in a divorce is separating your joint finances and joint assets. One of the first things you will want to do is to begin this process. A few items to consider are as follows:

Account Separations

Set up a separate checking account. You will need this to maintain your own funds to which your spouse will not have direct access to.

For any type of credit accounts with joint access (credit cards, lines of credit, debit accounts with lending functions, and drawable loans) close those or lock them such that charges may only be rendered with approval of both spouses.

Set some cash aside in a safe place in case your accounts and credit accounts are frozen, something that often happens as the divorce process proceeds.

Asset Protections

Lock and freeze any joint investment accounts from withdraw and divesture. Ensure that those accounts cannot be converted to cash and withdrawn nor that any loans can be taken using those accounts as collateral or pledged.

Obtain statements of any accounts of your spouse, such as retirement accounts, checking accounts, and investment accounts and maintain those in a safe place for future use.

Separate Personal Accounts

If you are cohabitating with your spouse or share a mailbox you will want to set up a temporary post office account address, you can rent a post office box to receive separate mail.

Create a new email address and maintain it separate from your spouse.

Change all of your passwords. Your spouse may know them and you will want to inhibit their access to your online accounts absent court intervention. Use a password they do not know, don’t reuse previous passwords.

Setting Yourself Up for Success

If you don’t have a paid job, go ahead and update your resume and start the process of looking for employment. Consider applying for some positions and consider future career opportunities.

Preserving Evidence

Unfortunately, some people as soon as the find out they are being divorced start hiding and divesting assets.

Take pictures of personal property and assets and save those somewhere safe in the event there is a dispute over the existence, nature and quality of personal property.

Make a detailed list of property and assets and save it somewhere safe.

Put together information about what assets you own, gather associated paperwork and financial statements (i.e. tax returns, bank statements, insurance policies, etc.)

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