An Amicable (As Possible) Divorce
By Ross Anderson, CFP®
Ross Anderson is not only a financial planner and a DJ, he is also a recent home buyer. He shares the joy of closing the deal and settling into a new home, balanced with the sorrows of unexpected expenses. If you are thinking of purchasing a home, this episode will give you a few pre-purchase ideas to consider. (See Ross's Bio)
AMANDA'S RULES FOR AN AMICABLE DIVORCE INCLUDE
- Remember that divorce is a business transaction. Leave your emotions at the door and focus on what is best for your long-term financial goals.
- Explore all possible options for managing the divorce process, including mediation and/or collaborative divorce before jumping to a litigated divorce. Doing so can help you potentially avoid thousands of dollars in legal fees.
- Gather documentation and get everything in writing. Don’t leave any important details of your separation as a verbal agreement – having details documented in writing will help prevent problems or misunderstandings in the future.
- Be prepared to give your financial life a divorce makeover – close all joint accounts, check your credit report, update your estate plan, change beneficiaries on all your investment accounts and pensions, change beneficiaries on any life insurance policies, and decide on your new tax filing status.
- Don’t neglect your emotional well-being in this process. Develop a support system of friends and family and don’t be afraid to seek out professional help from a licensed therapist.
Please note that Amanda is not a lawyer and neither she nor Motley Fool Wealth Management can provide legal advice. Couples should seek formal legal advice when considering divorce.
- State and local bar associations in your area can serve as source of referrals for family attorney.
- Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts – www.institutedfa.com – to find a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst
- “Crazy Time: Surviving Divorce and Building a New Life” by Abigail Trafford