So, you’re in the process of going through a divorce and you want to make sure you do everything you can to protect yourself. The only problem is, you’ve never been through a divorce before so you have no idea where to begin.
If this sounds like you and your current situation, worry no longer because we’re here to help!
As you are most likely already aware, around 50% of all marriages in the United States end in divorce. And while that number is a bit discouraging, to say the least, it does mean that there is a clear blueprint of what to do if and when it happens to you.
In this article, we’ll tell you how to protect your money during a divorce. That way you make sure you come out of the other side in good shape so you can start off your new life on the right foot!
Now then, let’s get started!
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Contact an Attorney Immediately
If you’re in the early stages of getting divorced and aren’t sure where to begin, contacting an attorney is without a doubt the best place to start. An attorney can take a look at your financial portfolio, and your situation, and help you create a plan that is best for you.
To be blunt, if you aren’t careful, you can make your situation much worse than it needs to be. That’s why it’s a good idea to sit down with an expert and create a step-by-step plan that can prevent you from digging yourself into a financial hole.
Open a Personal Bank Account
One of the first things a divorce attorney is going to tell you to do is to open a personal bank account.
You’re going to want to have a place to store any money that you currently have, or have coming to you, that has your name and your name only on it. Also, you’re going to need a personal bank account with only your name on it once the divorce is finalized anyway, so it’s a good idea to get a head start.
With this in mind, it’s important to note that you ARE NOT hiding any money from your spouse by doing this. You will need to be prepared to share all financial information related to this account during the process.
Protect Your Personal Items
While your money is indeed valuable, it’s important to remember and protect your personal belongings, too. Perhaps the best way to do this is to rent a storage unit nearby that you can keep your items at until your divorce is final.
Again, you’re going to have to report these items eventually, but you do NOT need to let your spouse know where they are located. Even if you’re going through a clean and amicable divorce, it’s wise to protect your own, most valuable items.
Don’t Make Any Big Purchases
Another thing that any good divorce attorney will tell you is to not make any big purchases until your divorce is finalized. Believe it or not, if you buy a new home or car while your divorce is being processed, it can still be considered your spouse’s property, too.
Of course, that’s not something you want to have to deal with at all, which again, is why it’s wise not to make any major purchases during the process.
Avoid Incurring New Debt
While it’s a bit difficult to acquire new debt without making any major purchases or taking out loans, but it’s still worth mentioning. By doing this, you can set yourself up for a tough time when your divorce is finalized and you’re out on your own. Simply put, it’s going to be hard to get a nice apartment or home if your credit score is severely damaged.
So, if you can pay everything in cash until your debt is finalized. This can be easier said than done, so which is why it’s wise to avoid any situations where you may need to rely on loans or credit cards to pay your bills.
Get a Post Office Box
Last but not least, it’s wise to get a post office box that you can use until your divorce is finalized. You may feel like an apartment address is okay, but if your spouse is aware of its location, they can intercept your mail, which isn’t ideal.
Again, even if you think your divorce is going to be a clean one, you have to protect yourself and your assets until everything is finalized. Because if you don’t, and something happens, you’ll be the one left to deal with the damage when you’re finally on your own again.
How to Protect Your Money During a Divorce
Well, there you have it! Those are a few tips and tricks on how to protect your money during a divorce. So as long as you keep these ideas in mind, you should be able to start your new life on the right foot one your divorce is finalized.
Remember, the first thing you should do is contact a divorce attorney. They’ll help guide you through the process and protect you from making any crucial errors during the process.
Next, you’re going to want to do everything you can legally to protect yourself and your assets. Things like opening up a private PO box, and placing your items in a secretive storage unit, are all good ideas.
Last but not least, it’s important to remember that you’re not alone in the process. Millions of people have gone through what you’re going through right now and survived, which means you will too!
Going through a divorce? Check out our blog post on how much a divorce costs so you can be financially prepared.