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Financial Considerations in a Divorce

Posted By Cairns Law Offices || 23-Sep-2014

A huge issue for divorcing couples is understanding how their financial needs will change after a divorce. One spouse may even be unaware of the family's financial situation since they were not in charge of bills or bank accounts.

Couple Must Talk Finances

Undergoing a divorce means that a couple needs to have an honest conversation about their finances. As part of a settlement, there are a few important areas that need to be touched on to ensure that neither party is left strapped for cash in the settlement.

Financial concerns to talk about are:

Money needs. Having an understanding of what money each spouse has available will help determine what assets would be best to obtain in the divorce. If money is an immediate concern, stocks, bonds, and mutual funds could be sold to help obtain money.

Retirement funds. Retirement funds can make up a good portion of a person's net worth. Delving into these should be done with care. A tax advisor is best consulted to determine how retirement accounts may affect tax returns and how these may be effectively transferred between parties.

Tax returns. Going through tax returns can paint a better picture of a couple's financial standing. This will also address any assets that may continue to be taxed or those assets that may allow for a reduction in taxes over time. Once taxes are factored in, the economic impact of some assets can drastically differ. What may seem like a financial gain may be a huge expense.

Joint responsibilities. Some things, such as home mortgages and credit cards, may have been taken out in the name of both spouses. It is important that these are addressed in the divorce settlement, since joint responsibilities remain so until they are fully transferred to one person. Going through these together can help make sure one spouse's credit is not harmed by the other's financial responsibility.

By working together, spouses may be able to come to terms with their divorce agreements on their own, which can allow the court to take a minimal role. If spouses are able to agree on property and debt division, the Cairns Law Offices can prepare a settlement agreement according to your wishes that may be quicker than if you went through the traditional court system.

Contact our firm today to see if we can help with your property and debt division needs!