Financial Steps To Take When You Get A Divorce

Unfortunately, many divorces are caused by financial stress. Sadly, the stress does not end when you decide to divorce. A divorce means you have to get your financial house in order and that you will have to budget carefully. When you go from a household with two incomes to a household with one, you have to prepare yourself. Here are some things you can do.

Check Your Credit Report

First, pull a copy of your credit report and make sure everything is accurate. The credit report will show all your financial history, including your debt, mortgage, car loans, and credit card accounts. If you shared expenses with your spouse, you will both have the same information on your individual credit reports.

If you notice anything wrong or if there is something you don't recognize, investigate it right away. While mistakes can happen, your spouse could have opened accounts in your name without your knowledge. If this is the case, you need to let your attorney know right away.

Close Accounts You Have Together

Some couples choose to combine bank accounts. If this is the case, get your own accounts right away and close your joint accounts. While you can remove your name and leave the account open, your spouse could continue to use the account and increase debt that could still affect your credit.

Change Your Healthcare Plan

If your spouse is on your healthcare plan, visit your human resources department to remove his or her name from your plan. If something happened and your spouse needed emergency medical care and received care with your insurance, you could be on the hook for the medical bills.

Change Your Beneficiaries

One thing to keep in mind is that just because you divorce your spouse, your will and estate does not change. You will have to physically update your will and insurance beneficiaries to include or remove anyone. If you do not make the changes, your spouse could end up receiving your estate and other assets if you pass away.

If you do not have a will in place at all, now is the perfect time to make one. If you pass away suddenly in the midst of your divorce, you want to be sure your spouse does not get your estate. Instead, you can list your children or other family members as beneficiaries.

If you need assistance with any other aspect of your finances during your divorce, be sure to consult with a divorce attorney to be sure you are fully covered.