A Guide to Becoming Financially Independent after Divorce
Things To Consider When Becoming Financially Independent After Your Divorce
Divorce can be financially devastating. Even if you are working, simply dropping down to one income while still maintaining many of the same expenses is going to put an automatic cramp in your budget. But many people may find themselves without an income at all after divorce since their spouse was the breadwinner and they stayed home to take care of children or the house.
Whatever your financial circumstances, you are going to need to take a good look at your finances after your divorce and make some changes. Your Gilbert divorce attorney can help you think through some of the issues you will face. Here are some things you can do to help yourself become financially independent after your divorce:
Examine Your Finances
Before you can figure out how to move forward, you need to figure out where you are. The first step you need to take is to thoroughly examine your finances. Look carefully at all your bank statements and the statements from any retirement or investment accounts. Figure out how much you have and how much interest you are gaining. Then look at your tax returns and your associated forms, including your W-2. You need to understand how much of your money is going to taxes both now and going forward. You’ll also need to figure out how that will change when you aren’t claiming the marriage deduction.
You should also open new accounts in your name. Keep all records from your joint accounts as you will need this when you are determining the separation of assets with your divorce attorney serving Mesa.
Update Your Budget
Pull out your old budget. Now it’s time to update that. You’ll need to remove any accounts that your spouse was responsible for and will continue to be responsible for, such as their car payment or their gym membership. You’ll then need to start getting accounts in your name only and updating those amounts, such as your car insurance or your health insurance.
You’ll need to include new payments that you will have to make, such as child care you now need, or that you will be taking on, such as making college savings deposits on your own. You’ll need a complete list of expenses and income so you can have a realistic idea of what your finances look like. Your Gilbert divorce attorney will use this partially to help you with things like child custody or spousal support. However, you’ll also need this to make good financial choices, such as cutting some expenses or finding ways to make additional income.
Work on Your Credit
How does your credit look? It may not be great. You may have relied on your spouse’s credit to get the things you needed. Or your credit may have taken a hit because you fell behind on payments when your income dropped after your spouse left.
Now is the time to work on rebuilding your credit if it is suffering. You won’t be able to do the things you need independently if your credit is bad – such as buying a new car or moving into a new house. Work on paying off delinquent accounts, getting balances to a lower level, or building a positive credit history with small purchases. Work with a financial advisor if you are unsure of where to start.
Get the Right Legal Help
Much of your divorce proceedings will be devoted to the division of your finances, both your assets and your debts. If you do not have the right divorce lawyer on your side, you risk giving up too many of the assets to which you are entitled and taking on too many of the debts from the marriage. Doing so will make it much harder for you to become financially independent after your divorce.
Work with the best Mesa divorce attorney you can to ensure that you get the right division of assets and debts in your divorce. Your attorney can also help you get spousal support and child support, where appropriate.
The team at My AZ Lawyers is ready to help you get the settlement you need in your divorce to start your life over and to gain your financial independence. We will fight to get you a fair settlement, as well as any support to which you are entitled. A child custody lawyer from our team can also help you get the custody arrangement that is best for your family. Call us today to meet with a family law lawyer and start exploring your options. We serve clients throughout Mesa, Glendale, Tucson, and Phoenix.
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