As soon as a person decides they are going to end their marriage, they need to start getting their finances in order. There are a few things a spouse should do in order to ensure they walk out of the marriage with an equitable portion of their marital assets. The very first thing to do is talk to a divorce lawyer in Lebanon County, PA clients trust to advocate for them.
It’s critical for a spouse to know exactly how much money is in their bank account when they separate. If they have joint accounts, they should either close or freeze them so their spouse doesn’t take all of the money before they get a chance to divide it in divorce court. Spouses with separate accounts should update the beneficiary designations to ensure their money would go to the desired person if they die.
It may not be possible to close joint credit cards with a balance on them but they can be frozen so neither spouse can make any new purchases. Men and women who are planning to get divorced should print a statement from each of their credit cards on the day they separate so they won’t be responsible for any purchases their spouse makes while they are going through the divorce. An attorney from the Law Office of Melissa R. Montgomery could advise clients on how to handle their joint and separate credit cards until the court makes a decision.
Couples with joint brokerage accounts should consider opening new accounts in their own names. It may be difficult for the court to determine how to divide joint accounts equitably if they continue to make contributions after deciding to get divorced. A spouse may be entitled to a portion of their husband or wife’s separate retirement accounts, so it’s important to know the balance of those accounts on the day they separate.
Getting divorced can be messy, but it may be a little easier if they–or at least one of them–has their finances in order when they file. A divorce lawyer in Lebanon County, PA may be able to help a client separate their assets and debts so they can get a fresh start.
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