Thanks for joining us again for this three part discussion on how to deal with your assets during a contentious divorce. We have already looked at the first six items on our list during parts one and two, now we’re going to wrap this up with the last four items.
However, before we start, we just want to remind you one last time that you absolutely have to discuss any major moves you want to make with your attorney, especially when it comes to protecting and dividing your assets. Certain maneuvers work really well for some situations, but can be a disaster in others (not to mention illegal!) So always check with your attorney before making any divorce related financial decisions.
Here we go…
If your spouse and children are covered by your health insurance policy, then regardless of how mad you might feel right now, don’t try to change that until the divorce is final. Even after that, you’ll likely be required to keep your children covered on your policy anyway, especially if your soon-to-be-ex doesn’t have health insurance.
Also, remember that this may actually work in your favor with regard to any future child support payments you may have to make. Often, the financial value of substantial and unplanned for medical expenses for your child, could be assessed against future child support payments.
Safe Deposit Box:
As we mentioned in the first installment of this article when addressing the issue of important documents, you can (and probably should) get yourself a safe deposit box for your valuables. If you and your spouse already share one, however, you will need to establish a separate one elsewhere.
Be sure to document any and all items or documents that you elect to place in your safe deposit box, just to be sure that you are not accused of hiding things from your spouse later on during the course of the divorce process.
Two people living apart is much more expensive that two people living together, so be prepared for some major life changes with regards to your finances. This is the time to tighten your budget belt. Cancel any extra phone lines, cut out your daily trip to Big B, and start bringing a packed lunch to work. Any efforts you make to reduce your expenses during this time will help the process to be a bit more financially bearable.
Last but not least, you need a good attorney. Now that you have taken steps to protect your investments and your financial future, you need to be able to step back and allow an experienced negotiator to represent you and your interests during this process. Your attorney is likely to advise you not to sign any documents, make any major life changes, or agree to anything until they are able to talk it through with you first. This is good advice and you should follow it!
Remember, your attorney has done this countless times before, and is familiar with all of the possible outcomes. Whereas for you, this is probably a much newer and very frightening experience. Stay strong – you can do this. We are here to help.