Whether you have been married for twenty years or two, untangling the bank accounts, property, and other finances can be complicated. While each divorce is unique to the couple, our Murrieta Divorce Attorney explains how you can prepare your finances for divorce.
1.What are the top pieces of financial advice you would give people as they begin to prepare for divorce?
Develop a financial plan to take you through the first few months of the divorce process. If you are the "out-spouse", and do not have your own stream of income, the first few months will be very difficult as the court system will move slowly to order child or spousal support. Without a financial source to draw from, the first few months may be extremely stressful for that spouse. If you are the wage-earning spouse, be prepared to pay some level of support as well as finding a way to continue servicing the critical family debt (i.e. mortgage, insurance, etc...) good divorce planning can minimize the stress of this time period.
2.What are the biggest mistakes people make in the months leading up to divorce?
The biggest mistake people make is not to gather information. The copy machine needs to be your best friend in the months or weeks leading to divorce. People should make copies of deeds, paystubs, bank statements, credit card statements, and other critical financial documents. The lack of access to these documents makes it very difficult to move the case forward once the divorce is filed.
3. How can you set aside money for your divorce if your finances are still together?
Spouses in California owe a fiduciary duty to each other and major changes should be avoided. However, people should plan adequately to preserve the financial status quo by gathering documents and information. Parties should try to set aside sufficient funds to help them get through the difficult start of the case. The finances will be very difficult to address in those first few months.
If you are considering divorce, contact Westover Law Group to set up your confidential consultation. (951) 643-0085