The old adage “a dollar save is a dollar earned” leads to the real question of how to minimize the financial cost of a divorce.
Here are 2 simple tips:
1) Prove it. You can’t deduct what you can’t prove. This applies to all assets that you owned when you got married and any assets that you accumulated from gifts and inheritances during marriage. You also will need to prove any debts that you have at separation if you want to deduct them. If you can’t prove the assets you owned at marriage, any assets from gifts and inheritances during marriage and any debts existing at separation, you will be parting with much more of your money at separation. Conversely, you need to uncover and prove your spouse’s debts at marriage and assets at separation. These figures too will either increase what your spouse pays you or what you collect from your spouse. So in conclusion, keep good records. This includes all of your tax returns and monthly bank, investment and credit card statements. A home video of your possessions at marriage can be very useful.
2) Be informed. Education is power and power is valuable. Meet with a Family lawyer to know your rights and obligations resulting from cohabitation, marriage, children, death and divorce. Each event will trigger a different set of rights and obligations.
The unforeseen financial consequences of divorce can be avoided or diminished with knowledge and planning.