Preparing for a divorce can bring many concerns including your ability to maintain as much of your finances as possible. Due to the nature of a legal separation, you will undoubtedly lose some of your assets. However, you can minimize the collateral damage by planning ahead and being strategic about your finances.
Personal financial planning can help you assess what money you have and where it is going. This information will enable you to develop a budget that provides you with the data you need to make informed decisions about your future.
Knowing what you have
It will take some time to find out exactly what you have, especially if your ex was primarily in charge of financial affairs. If you suspect that your ex has withheld assets and is not being honest about it, you could hire a forensic accountant to do some digging. Know where the money is coming in and where the money is going out. Immediately cancel any joint financial accounts and start your own.
Legally separating your finances will take time and professional intervention. According to U.S. News, double and triple-check that all associated paperwork has been properly filled out. This includes tax filings, QDRO’s, divorce papers, and other applicable financial documents.
Developing new habits
Transitioning to an independent lifestyle after having shared so much for so long could take time and some getting used to. Your finances are no exception. Beginning now, you can start developing healthy and strategic financial habits.
Assess your retirement. Create a budget. Consider investing and diversifying your savings where possible. Take advantage of company-sponsored retirement programs. Look for ways to build your credit. These actions can help you to strengthen your financial situation and maintain a comfortable standard of living.