Often, couples in the process of a divorce may be so stressed and anxious that they can’t wait to leave the divorce behind them. Haste, however, is only one of the many mistakes that couples make while waiting to end the marital relationship. Rushing towards a divorce settlement can lead to many costly financial mistakes that you will later regret.
Separate as much as you can. If you have assets that were purchased solely by you before the marriage, then you don’t want to make the mistake of putting it in a joint name. If the asset is considered joint property, you may have to split it 50-50.
In the rush to get a divorce, don’t neglect the finer points of your premarital agreement, if you were smart enough to have got one. There will be many provisions included in the premarital agreement that must be honored upon divorce.
When a person accumulates wealth during the marriage, he or she may have to split it during a divorce. This is why timing is one of the biggest factors in a divorce. It may seem cruel, but if you own solid assets or have a business, and have been considering separation for a while, it may be best to file for divorce before you expand your business any further.
As soon as the decision to file for divorce has been made, make sure that you separate your bank accounts as well as credit cards. That means that you don’t have any nasty surprises in the form of a huge bill, charged to your credit card.
Be extra cautious as far as your retirement accounts are concerned. They could be considered marital property, so make sure you’re not in a position where you actually owe your ex-spouse money.
Don’t rely on mediation to look out for your best interests. Typically, a mediation process is in place to ensure an amicable settlement between the spouses, with as little conflict as possible. That does not mean that a conflict-free settlement is in your best interest. Don’t get so wrapped in the mindset that you must avoid friction at all costs, that you’re willing to sacrifice your financial interests. Remember, the friction may last for a little while, but the settlement must last over the rest of your lifetime.
That brings us to the biggest tip of all – hire an experienced divorce lawyer who will look out for your best interests.