Important financial steps to take when ending a marriage

While some marriages may end amicably, more often than not there is fighting and bitterness involved in the process, particularly when it comes to finances. Whether you have children or not, there are things such as debt and retirement plans to take into consideration when starting the divorce proceedings.

Remove your name from credit cards and joint accounts

Any debt incurred during your marriage may be split evenly, but if you do not remove your name from current credit cards, you may be responsible for any money spent during or after the divorce proceedings. One of the first things you should do for protection when divorcing is to remove your name from any joint accounts or credit cards.

Mortgages and car loans

If you bought a house or a vehicle together, it is likely that both your names are on the mortgage or loans. Before your divorce, you will want to remove the name of the party that is not keeping these items so they are no longer responsible for paying for them. If you leave your name on the mortgage and your spouse decides to quit paying, it may affect your credit down the road. This will likely be a part of the divorce settlement. You should discuss division of property with a divorce attorney to ensure your assets are being split equitably.

Obtain separate insurance plans

Your vehicle, home and life insurance policies are probably set up with both your names attached. This will be another point where you will want to get policies that are just in your name. You will need to obtain your own car insurance, renters insurance or homeowners insurance based on what you own and where you plan to live. If you are losing health insurance, you will need to purchase your own, and if you are the primary insurance holder, you will want to remove your spouse from your policy once the divorce is final.

Change passwords and login names

If you have been married for a while, it is likely that your spouse has access to your email, your bank accounts or anything else that is on your computer. Once you are divorced, anything you have should remain private. Change all your passwords right when the divorce proceedings start in order to protect confidential information from your spouse.

Streamline your divorce

If you are concerned about your financial future after a divorce or wonder how to protect your assets from a spouse, it may benefit you to speak to an attorney about your options and the best ways to streamline your divorce.