Avoid These Financial Mistakes During Your Illinois Divorce
Getting divorced is unlike other break-ups. Not only do couples have to deal with the emotional consequences of ending a marriage, they must also deal with the legal and financial ramifications of getting divorced. There is no way to completely avoid all negative economic consequences during divorce, but there are a few things you can do to help minimize these consequences.
One of the best ways to protect your rights and safeguard your finances during divorce is to get help from a qualified Illinois divorce lawyer. Additionally, experts have other pieces of wisdom which can help you avoid the most common financial pitfalls during divorce.
Mistake 1: Being Unaware of Your Family’s Finances
In many marriages, one person does the majority of the financial planning. If you are getting divorced and are not up-to-date regarding your financial scenario, you can easily be taken advantage of. If you are considering divorce, it is a good idea to gather certain documents now, instead of waiting until you need those documents. Unfortunately, divorce can sometimes bring out the worse in people and your ex may be unwilling or unable to provide these items in the future.
Financial planning experts encourage anyone getting divorced to gather:
- Bank account information including account numbers and balances;
- Pay stubs;
- Income tax returns;
- Information regarding loans and other debt;
- Investment account statements;
- Pension and retirement accounts information;
- Wills, trusts, and other estate planning documents;
- Any premarital or prenuptial agreements;
- Social Security statements which show earnings records and expected future benefits;
- Bills of sale and other documents showing how much you paid for major assets; and
- Receipts for any renovations or improvements made to your home.
This list is not exhaustive, but gathering these documents will be a good start on your road to financial independence.
Mistake 2: Oversharing on Social Media
Social media like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have revolutionized the way we communicate with our friends and family. While you may be tempted to share updates about the divorce on social media, doing so can put you at risk. For example, one spouse complained that he could not afford the proposed divorce settlement, but then posted pictures on social media of an expensive vacation. This gave the other spouse leverage to ask for an even greater settlement.
Mistake 3: Not Considering Mediation or Collaborative Divorce
Sometimes litigation is necessary. However, in some divorce cases, couples can figure out issues of property division and child custody through a qualified divorce mediator. Mediation can be a cost-efficient solution for couples who struggle to negotiate on their own but can do so with some help. “Collaborative family law” is the term used to describe a conflict resolution process involving a Collaborative Family Law practitioner. During a collaborative divorce, all parties share a mutual objective of coming to an agreement on divorce issues as efficiently and equitably as possible.
Contact a Wheaton, Illinois Divorce Mediation and Collaborative Law Attorney
To speak with an experienced DuPage County divorce lawyer from Mirabella, Kincaid, Frederick & Mirabella, LLC, call us at 630-665-7300. Let us provide the guidance you need at every stage of the divorce process.