All divorces have the potential to be full of contention and heartbreak, and that’s particularly true when there are a lot of assets at stake. Your relationship may be over, but you want to preserve your way of life as much as possible — and that means securing your financial well-being.
What’s the best way to get through this process successfully? Here are some suggestions:
1. Consider your divorce to be primarily a business transaction.
Marriage may be about love, but divorce is mostly about money. Knowing this can help you set aside your emotions, establish better boundaries with your spouse and avoid unproductive arguments that waste time and money. Focus on the practical issues that need to be decided, like your division of property and issues of support, instead of fighting over “emotional” assets, like the wedding china.
2. Dig deep into the family finances and your future needs.
Knowledge is power, especially when it comes to money. You can’t negotiate for your fair share of the marital assets or support until you know what’s really at stake. Don’t make any agreements until you fully understand your family’s financial situation and have a clear picture of what you need to comfortably provide for your future. Dig through all of the financial holdings and get a good, clear understanding of what your post-divorce expenses will be like.
3. Consider the pros and cons of keeping the house.
Wanting to keep the family home is a gut reaction for a lot of divorcing people, but it’s not always in anybody’s best interests to do so. The upkeep and expenses associated with your home may be more than you can manage on your own after the divorce is final.
4 Don’t overlook the tax consequences of your decisions.
Splitting the investments and dividing the retirement accounts can get tricky. When assets are distributed the wrong way, the tax consequences can wipe out a significant portion of their value. Get a financial advisor you can trust and listen carefully to what they say before you make any agreements.
Any mistakes you make today can come back to haunt you for a very long time, so make sure that you have an experienced advocate working on your behalf. If you’re going through a complicated divorce that involves a lot of assets, it’s smart to pay attention to the details.