When going through a divorce, you may feel concerned about your money. One question that a lot of people going through a divorce have is how can I protect my money? Thankfully, there are certain things that you can do to protect your money and six of them will be discussed here.
Print Off Current Bank Statements
As soon as you know you are getting a divorce, print off all of your current bank statements. This includes any statements from any accounts that the two of you hold separately or together, as well as any credit card statements.
Having this information on hand can protect you if your spouse tries to pull money from either of these accounts during your divorce proceedings. Giving these documents to your attorney is a great way to make sure that they are kept safe and that your judge has access to them.
Open Your Own Bank Account
If you are afraid that your spouse may try to pull from your combined funds, then it is a good idea to open your own bank account. However, keep in mind that it is important that you are open with your spouse after you have done this. Let them know that you are separating your accounts and that they will not have access to your new account.
While they may be upset initially, this honesty will help things to work out more smoothly in court and will keep things more civil between the two of you in the long run.
Close Credit Cards
If at all possible, close any of the credit cards that the two of you share. If this is not possible, do the best that you can to pay down the debts on them. Since your debt will likely be split evenly after your divorce, paying it down will simply help to reduce the debt you have to pay back after your divorce.
Again, when you decide to close the credit cards, be sure to let your spouse know what is going on.
Do Not Hide Money
One of the worst things that you can do to try and protect your money in a divorce is to hide it. This will backfire on you and may result in you getting less money in the divorce. It is much better to be open about your income and your assets when you go to court.
For one thing, this gives the judge a positive impression of who you are as a person because you are honest and upfront with them. They will then be able to look at all of your income and assets and determine the best way to go about dividing it between you and your ex.
Keep Your Inheritance Separate
If you receive an inheritance at any point in your marriage, it is very important that you keep this inheritance separate from your other income. Avoid using it to buy something that would be considered joint property, such as a living room set or renovations for your home.
This can make it difficult for you to get your inheritance money back, or get the items you bought with the inheritance money back because it may be difficult to prove that these items were purchased with this money. This is especially true if a long amount of time has passed since purchasing the item with your inheritance money.
Sign A Prenuptial Agreement
One of the best things that you can do to protect your money in a divorce is to sign a prenuptial agreement. This allows you and your spouse to discuss your finances before you ever get married and puts you on the same page from day one.
This prenup will make the process of dividing your finances in a divorce so much easier because it states very clearly who had what before the marriage and who gets what if a divorce occurs.
To learn more about how to protect your money in a divorce, visit us at Beckman Steen & Lungstrom, P.A.