Best Financial Advisor Divorce in USA
Best Financial Advisor Divorce in USA
While divorce carries a heavy emotional burden at any age, the financial stakes for older divorcees can be greater, and the prospect of starting over more daunting than for younger people.
The older divorcees have often accumulated significant wealth.
They tend to be focused on that final sprint to retirement.
Retirement may also entail downsizing a home or a move to the coast or the bush.
At all points along this path through later life, the financial consequences of divorce are substantial.
Given the major upheaval created by this event, it’s critical to obtain professional financial advice right from the start.
A good financial planner could save you money in the long run by helping to avoid prolonged court battles and mapping out a plan for future financial security.
This will help to ensure the smooth separation of finances and a reduction in any unnecessary emotional pain.
This doesn’t just apply to the end of formal marriages; the issues are largely the same when de facto relationships come to an end.
Financial Planning Divorce: The checklist – Best Financial Advisor Divorce in USA
At the end of a marriage or long-term relationship, some issues require immediate attention while others can be left until a bit later. Urgent items include:
- Resolving living arrangements and ensuring access to funds for daily expenses.
- Establishing individual bank accounts and giving new bank details to employers.
- Securing an adequate income and working out a budget.
- Changing life insurance and IRA death benefit beneficiaries.
- Revising Wills and Powers of Attorney.
- If dependent children are in the picture, their living arrangements and financial needs must be taken care of.
- If a property is held in a partner’s name, legal action may be required to prevent it from being sold prior to a property settlement.
Once these pressing issues are addressed attention can be given to:
- Dealing with the family home – will it be retained, by whom and for how much?
- How will pension balances be split?
- How will the division of personal property be managed, taking into account both the financial and personal aspects of this difficult task?
In the case of a family business, will the business relationship continue?
Who Gets What in Divorce
No matter where you reside, generally, any assets or property that you acquired while married will be divided when you divorce.
There are a few exceptions: for instance, if you inherited assets or received gifts individually, the division rule may not apply.
Additionally, you may be able to keep the assets and property that you acquired before you got married.
What About Debt – Divorce
If you have joint debt with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, it is best to pay it off before finalizing the divorce.
Shared debts remain both party’s obligation in the eyes of a lender, even if the divorce settlement says only one spouse is responsible for paying it back.
If the responsible spouse fails to make the payments, any defaults will show up on the other spouse’s credit history.
If the debt cannot be paid off pre-divorce and becomes only one spouse’s responsibility, the other should continue to have access to the account’s history to make sure it is being paid as agreed.
Better yet, have an attorney create an enforcement action in which you can take over the property or some other property if you are not able to be removed from the debt and your spouse, who was assigned the debt, fails to pay.
An attorney can help you make payment of the debt in your name contractual or binding in some other format.
Debt in divorce can be tricky It is wise to seek legal and financial guidance if you are dealing with large amount of debt or a significant debt (like a home mortgage).
Community property states typically divide debt equally between spouses, no matter whether it was from an individual or joint account.
You should close all joint accounts post-divorce, to avoid being responsible for debts that your spouse incurs.
Once the divorce is finalized, have them reclassified as individual accounts by your creditors.
If you and your spouse have a mortgage for a home that has appreciated in value, consider selling it before the divorce is finalized, as the IRS allows you to take advantage of $500,000 in realized capital gains if you are a married taxpayer, an amount that is cut in half for single filers.
We recommend consulting a tax advisor to navigate these rules.
Divorce and Home Ownership
A house is more than an asset. It’s where you live.
You may have put a lot of hard work into making the house feel like home.
Your kids may have grown up there. It can be a difficult choice to give that up during a divorce.
Can You Afford To Keep It?
You’ve got to feel confident that keeping the house makes financial sense for you.
You may have bought the property with two incomes, and keeping up with payments on one income may be tough or even impossible.
It’s not only the mortgage payments, but also the insurance, repairs, maintenance, property taxes, utilities and other expenses for which you will – suddenly solely – be responsible.
To keep the house, you may be required to buy out your spouse’s equity.
This is measured by the value of the house minus any mortgages owed on it.
Or you might be able to “trade” assets. In other words, you would give up your half of some other equally valued assets you own jointly to pay for your spouse’s half of the house.
Or you may be able to refinance the mortgage for more than you currently owe and pay your spouse for their half of the house with the proceeds.
Keeping the house, if you can, may provide you some stability in an unstable time.
Perhaps it’s just a matter of making it through the divorce, and then reconsidering your options – and perhaps selling it – once you’ve settled into your new life.
On the other hand, selling the marital house may set both you and your spouse free.
It may allow you be able to make a clean break from your married life and start over.
Divorce and Children – Best Financial Advisor Divorce in USA
Children can cost a lot, especially when you have not budgeted their future needs into the equation.
Be sure to consider things like cars, car insurance, private school tuition, day care costs, summer camps, extracurricular activities, and even smaller things like school lunch accounts and back to school shopping. These costs add up over time.
Budget your Post-Divorce Lifestyle
Living separately can be scarier than living together – even if you were miserable!
To ease the fear, remember knowledge is power.
It is imperative to know your monthly income and expenses.
This is particularly important if one spouse has been paying the bills and managing the household finances alone.
Figure out your immediate needs and go from there.
It is important that clients know realistically what they can spend each month following the divorce.
This sets them up for a secure financial future and gives them peace of mind.
It can also help you negotiate from a position of power, not fear.
Conflict or cooperation – Divorce Financial Planning
Many couples manage their divorces cooperatively.
For others, it is a time of rejection, blame and conflict.
But, even if a divorce can’t be amicable, it can often be handled in a mutually respectful way.
Minimizing the involvement of lawyers will help to avoid substantial legal costs, preferably to the benefit of both parties.
Mintco Financial Financial Advisor Best Financial Advisor Divorce in USA
To make a graceful exit, you’ve got to have a plan.
No matter where you are in the divorce process, we can help.
We will be here to help you with items as basic as budgeting, or as complex as figuring out if the settlement offer from your soon-to-be-ex will sustain you after the divorce is final.
Throughout the process we’ll be here for you with sound, compassionate guidance.