Ending a marriage causes stress and grief for most couples. But not allowing those emotions to cloud judgments over the process is vitally important to a person’s future personal, emotional and financial well-being.
High-asset couples have the most at stake during a divorce. Fairly dividing substantial marital assets can be daunting when combined with determining custody arrangements and future support payments. It’s essential to outline several considerations.
Tips for settling the financial side of divorce
Forbes magazine convened a panel of financial experts to discuss many factors when pursuing an equitable divorce settlement. These include:
- Understanding your finances: Even before filing, know your cash flow situation, income and expenses and how that could change after divorce.
- Keeping emotions to a minimum: While a contentious split may encourage one spouse to take “revenge” against the other, emotions typically have little or no influence on reaching the best financial outcome.
- Putting your children’s interests first: Whether determining custody, child support or visitation plans, always put your kids’ needs first. Using children to get back at the other spouse will likely only increase emotional and financial costs.
- Remembering retirement accounts: Pensions, 401(k)s and other retirement accounts may be substantial and are typically subject to division. Consult an attorney who understands how these assets are divided.
- Considering mediation instead of litigation: Divorce trials can exact a hefty financial and emotional toll. Working with an attorney who understands the mediation process can result in more favorable outcomes without the added costs, and with the bonus of keeping the agreement private.
Protect your future
Consulting an experienced family law attorney is vital before making any substantial financial moves, as some can be viewed as illegal and create more headaches later on. Your lawyer will also make sure that your spouse plays by the rules, so you receive the best possible outcome setting the stage for the next chapter in your life.