Considering divorce can be a difficult decision, and one that should not be taken lightly. Apart from the emotional and personal aspects of a divorce, there are also many financial considerations that should be taken into account. Here is a checklist of the big 9 financial planning considerations to keep in mind when considering divorce from a legal perspective.
1. Understand Your Marital Assets
The first step in planning for divorce is to understand your marital assets. These may include your home, investments, bank accounts, retirement accounts, businesses, inheritance, and other assets that were acquired during the marriage. Make a list of all your assets and make sure you have a clear understanding of their value.
2. Identify Your Debts
Just as important as understanding your assets is identifying your debts. This may include mortgages, car loans, credit card debt, and any other outstanding loans. Make a list of your debts and be sure to account for them when dividing assets and liabilities during the divorce.
3. Understand Indiana's Statutes
It is vital to understand Indiana statutes (Ind. Code § 31-15-7-4 and I.C. § 31-15-7-5) on division in a dissolution, including how assets and liabilities are divided. It's important to understand the standards for dissolution / any deviation from the standard division and how they may impact your divorce settlement.
4. Consult with a Financial Advisor
A financial advisor can help you understand the financial implications of your divorce and help you plan for your future. They can help you create a budget, evaluate your investments, and develop a plan for managing your finances post-divorce.
5. Hire an Experienced Divorce Attorney
A divorce attorney can help you navigate the legal aspects of your divorce, including property division, spousal support, and child custody. It's important to hire an attorney who has experience handling divorce cases and who can provide you with the guidance and support you need during this difficult time.
6. Consider Mediation
Mediation as part of the divorce process can be a more amicable and cost-effective way to divorce. These methods involve working together with your spouse, your attorneys and a neutral third party to reach a mutually agreeable settlement. The mediator does not represent either party’s interests and cannot provide any legal advice. It is important to have an attorney to help advise you on your legal position and interests.
7. Evaluate Your Retirement Accounts
Knowing what retirement benefits you have such as 401 (k), 403 (b), PERF, and if they are vested is very important to get an accurate picture of your marital property.
8. Plan For the Children in Your Dissolution
If you have children, it's important to plan for their future. This may include developing a parenting plan, child support, and establishing a plan for paying for their education.
9. Update Your Estate Plan
Finally, it's important to update your estate plan after a divorce. This may include updating your will, trusts, and other estate planning documents to reflect your new financial and personal circumstances.
In conclusion, considering divorce is a complex decision, and one that requires careful planning and consideration. By following this big 9 financial planning checklist, you can help ensure that you are prepared for the financial implications of your divorce and that you are able to plan for your future with confidence.
This blog post was written by a member of the team at Dixon & Moseley, PC. It is not intended to be legal advice and is for marketing purposes. Contact us today at 317-972-8000 if you would like to learn more and schedule a consultation.