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Avoid these mistakes if you plan to divorce

If you are not careful, divorce can be tricky and full of pitfalls. Unfortunately, even a small misstep can seriously damage your finances. When you are starting over after a long-term marriage, your post-divorce financial health should be among your top priorities. For instance, can you afford to keep your marital home in Santa Rosa or would it benefit you more to sell the property and divide the proceeds? Insisting on coming out of a divorce with the house is a mistake that many people make out of nothing more that sentimental attachment.

There are other common mistakes that many people make during the divorce process that can severely hurt finances. If you are planning to end your marriage, avoid the following divorce mistakes.

Not advocating for yourself

You and your spouse are the only ones that truly know the exact circumstances of your lives. This means that it is up to you to speak up for yourself and make sure that your attorney is keeping you updated with the status of your divorce. Do not be afraid to ask questions and point out facts that you think your attorney or the opposition has overlooked.

Ignoring the status of your finances

Ignoring your finances will not help you when it comes time to negotiate a divorce settlement. As soon as you make the decision to divorce, make a full account of everything you and your spouse own and owe. When you meet with your attorney, you should have a full accounting of all assets and debts that you and your husband own together and separately.

Not preparing for the change in your lifestyle

A change in your standard of living will inevitably come with your divorce. You may go from a two-income household to a single-income household and you need to be ready for it. For instance, you should probably reconcile with the fact that you will most likely need to downsize and move into a smaller house. Do not put yourself in a position so that you have to dip into your retirement funds in order to keep up your past lifestyle.

Not separating finances soon enough

One of the tasks you should do as soon as possible after you decide to divorce is to separate your finances. If you and your husband have only joint bank accounts and credit cards, you need to separate your money as soon as you can. Open your own bank accounts at a separate bank, change your passwords and start building your own financial identity. If you put this off until after you serve your husband with divorce papers, you risk giving him an opportunity to empty the joint accounts.

Divorce is often messy and complicated but with a little planning, you can avoid making some serious financial mistakes along the way. If you are considering divorce, you can protect your interests by avoiding the above missteps.

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