Going through a divorce will inevitably have some effect on your financial situation. The transition from a couple in a two income household into a single income household can require some planning and strategizing. But even before that sort of long term planning can be addressed, it is important to consider asset protection in the prelude to a divorce and as the process moves forward.
Ideally and in many cases, couples considering divorce are able to work together amicably to separate their financial lives. In other cases, as a result of animosity or simply financial irresponsibility or strain, the actions of one soon to be ex-spouse can have negative consequences for the other. Either way it is important for anyone preparing for divorce to take measures to position themselves as well as possible for a healthy financial life moving forward.
A good starting point is to open separate checking and savings accounts. Some married couples maintain separate accounts throughout their marriage but many do not. Regardless of whether it makes sense in your case to immediately begin depositing your paychecks into your own account, or moving other assets, having a separate account will be a necessity at some point and may facilitate many of the other financial transactions you will be making later on.
Examine your credit and, if necessary, take steps to limit the amount of exposure you may have to financial liability that the other spouse may incur. While there may be means of apportioning debt accumulated during the run up to a divorce, it is often much easier to nip this problem in the bud by eliminating any potential sources of new debt for which you may be considered potentially liable.
There are clearly many other important steps to take including retirement beneficiary elections, tax considerations, and insurance policy modifications. This is an area where steps taken early in the process can avoid significant trouble and expense later on. It is important to consult with an experienced Minneapolis divorce attorney to help navigate this process.
Source: Business Insider, "4 Steps To Getting Your Finances Back On Track After A Divorce,"Angela Colley, Jan. 4, 2012