One of the reasons so many people fear getting divorced is because of the degree of financial uncertainty that comes with having to go back to trying to covering expenses all on one's own. If you know that a divorce is looming, however, it doesn't have to be a such a scary, unpredictable time in your life. You can make certain financial decisions early on to help make your transition back into being single a much less painful one.
When a couple decides to divorce, finances can quickly become a contentious issue, especially when an individual is faced with having to give up some of his or her hard-earned money, a portion of his or her inheritance or a piece of a monetary gift he or she previously received. The right your spouse has to this money depends greatly as to whether the funds are considered to be either separate or marital property and if your state is a community property or equitable distribution one.
If you're a baby boomer getting a divorce, you might have moved beyond the stage at which you need to fight it out with your soon-to-be ex over child custody. There are plenty of other issues that can make divorce negotiations just as heated. Among those, is deciding who is going to gain access to retirement accounts.
Nothing about divorce is easy, and that's true even if you are both in agreement about everything and are approaching things in a civil matter. You still have to ensure all the legalities are considered and followed through with, which is one reason most experts recommend working with a lawyer. When you get into the details of property division, things can get complex, and that is never more true than when a family business is in play.
Getting married is a big event in a person's life. If you are getting ready to say "I do" to the person who has captured your heart, you should make sure to take steps to protect your future. For many people, this means having a prenuptial agreement signed.
When you think of property division in a divorce, assets such as houses, cars, bank accounts and valuables may come to mind first. Another asset you will want to claim your rights to is your spouse's retirement plan. You need to remember to consider not only your financial standing immediately after your divorce but also well into the future. That money would go to your benefit if you and your spouse were still married, and some of it still can even with the dissolution of your marriage. You can receive retirement benefits through a Qualified Domestic Relations Order.
So you're getting divorced, and you're trying to divide up assets. One of your largest assets is your bank account, and you're happy because you opened it and only put your name on the account. That means you get to keep all of the money yourself, right, rather than splitting it with your spouse?
Gone are the days when couples routinely stay married for 50 or 60 years. While those couples still exist out there, they are the exception and not the rule.
Generally speaking, you will get to keep an inheritance if it's given to you when you are married and then you later get divorced. While standard income is typically thought of as belonging to the couple -- making it marital property -- inheritance money is typically thought of as belonging to just one person: The person to whom it was left.
One of the biggest assets -- and liabilities -- that a couple might have together is a home. If you are going through a divorce, then who will keep the home -- or whether anyone will keep the home -- is an important consideration. Every situation is unique, but these three questions are a good place to start when making such a decision.