Robert D. Paulbeck, Attorney at Law
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Be as accurate as possible with money during divorce

When you're filing for divorce, part of the process is simply declaring your assets to the court. This allows the court to divide those assets properly between you and your spouse.

The key is to be as accurate as you can be. Do not guess. You don't just want to get close. If you're not perfectly accurate, you could really stand to lose a lot of money.

For instance, maybe you have investments to split up. You know it's roughly $30,000, so that's what gets reported. They give you $15,000 and you think it's fair. Your spouse pulls that money out and you put it in the bank.

In reality, though, your investments were worth $36,000. It doesn't seem like a huge difference to you, but you likely would have gotten $18,000 if you'd reported it accurately. You lost $3,000 by guessing.

That's just one example. Remember, you have to report a lot of different financial figures, including:

  • Income
  • Bank account totals
  • Living expenses
  • Monthly mortgage payments and total owed
  • Credit card debt
  • Investment account totals
  • Retirement account totals
  • Monthly costs related to your kids, if applicable

Even this is not an exhaustive list. Every family has different expenses. Don't rush through this process and make a rough guess. A few mistakes here and there could cost you. You must take it slow and really work out all of the financial details that apply to your family at the time of your divorce.

As you do this, make sure you fully understand the legal options you have to protect your rights to the assets you deserve.

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