Divorce is one of the most challenging experiences a person can face. Not only is it filled with uncertainty and emotion, there are also a number of legal complexities. Nearly everyone going through a divorce is concerned about making mistakes or doing something that could have a negative effect on their lives for years to come. Though every situation is different, there are certain things you will want to avoid to ensure your divorce process runs as smoothly as possible.
What are some of the most common mistakes to avoid?
Mismanaging Debt and Credit
Financial issues are common in marriage and in divorce. If you are in the process of divorcing, it is important to remember that just like assets, debt is divided between spouses. This means you could be responsible for any debt your spouse has accumulated or might accumulate during the divorce, and vice versa.
If you have concerns about your responsibility for your soon-to-be-former spouse’s debt, speak with your attorney. There are exceptions to the general rule about dividing debt, so if your spouse is engaging in malicious financial behavior to hurt you, you might be protected. Likewise, if you make poor choices with debt and credit during your divorce assuming you are only half responsible, your actions could backfire.
Also keep in mind your credit score will hold even more weight once you are single because lenders will only have one score and one income to consider. Do all you can to make responsible credit decisions during your divorce and protect your credit score as best you can, even if it means a few temporary sacrifices.
Tax issues are confusing enough as a single or married person, but when you are in the process of divorcing, organizing and filing taxes can be downright frustrating. Divorce has a significant impact on your financial status and will alter your tax return. In addition to a change in household income, you will also be faced with tax issues related to child or spousal support. Make sure you work with a tax professional experienced with divorce issues the first time you file during and after your divorce.
Divorce is filled with emotional turmoil and if your spouse betrayed you or hurt you, it can be tempting to retaliate. Making misleading statements or withholding information will only come back to haunt you in the long run, so be open and honest about your situation during all parts of the divorce proceedings. Honesty can lead to feelings of vulnerability during your divorce, which can be tough, but it is worth it in the long run.
Are you in the midst of divorce? Are you worried about making a mistake that could affect your future? Your feelings are normal. Divorce can be an intimidating experience, but working with an experienced attorney helps. Contact Michele Cline to discuss your situation and find the support you need during this difficult time.