When facing the end of a marriage, a California spouse is also facing significant financial adjustments. Finances and property division are some of the most contentious issues in any divorce, and the choices made during and after a divorce will affect a spouse’s financial security for years to come. Handling money well before and during divorce is important.
Before divorce, gathering financial documentation is critical. This involves getting information pertaining to all accounts, investments, valuable assets and other marital property. Accounting for these things will make the property division process simpler. It is also wise to close any joint accounts, such as credit card accounts, in order to avoid complications and the accumulation of jointly held debt while the divorce is still underway.
It is appropriate and prudent to be proactive when it comes to finances during divorce. Tracking income, making a budget, informing credit bureaus of the divorce and understating tax returns are all ways a California spouse can actively work to protect his or her financial interests. When making financial decisions or considering the terms of a settlement, it is beneficial to consider how each outcome could look years into the future.
Handling money well before and during divorce is not easy, especially for someone who may be unused to managing finances. This is why it is helpful to work with an attorney from the earliest stages of the process, even before the divorce paperwork is filed. Experienced guidance can help one avoid complications and decisions that will expose a spouse to the potential for future disputes or financial setbacks.