Going through a divorce is hard. It is a stressful and emotional time for many. On top of this, divorce can also create complex financial issues. Financial issues tend to arise because people oftentimes forget to ask themselves the necessary questions to ensure financial stability after your divorce has finalized. This blog provides five questions every divorcee should ask themselves before they file for divorce.
Do I Have Health Insurance? One of the biggest financial concerns at divorce time is health insurance. Maybe you (and/or your children) obtained health insurance coverage through your soon-to-be-ex-spouse’s work. Or maybe you and your soon-to-be-ex split the monthly cost of health insurance. Whatever the case may be, you need to ask yourself: whether your coverage will continue upon divorce? Whether you can afford the current cost of your health insurance without extra financial assistance with COBRA; and, if applicable, whether your children will be covered?
What Debt Do I Owe? Another financial concern that you need to ask yourself about is the amount of debt you and your ex-spouse have. Upon divorce, the presumption is that a trial court will divide the assets/debts 50/50 between the parties. However, this is only a presumption, meaning that it can be overcome at trial. Asking yourself questions like “what do I owe per month in debt?” or “how much can I afford to pay per month?” can go a long way if you work this into trial evidence for the court to consider. Having an idea of the amount of debt you have, as well as your spouse, will allow you to better prepare for the future, such as refinancing your home or consolidating your debt.
What Assets Do I Own? On top of knowing what debt you have, it is also important to know what assets you own. Again, there is a presumption in Indiana that everything is divided 50/50 between the parties. However, this is, again, just a presumption. You need to know what assets you have that can help support your post-divorce life. For example, is your current employment the only monthly income you receive, or do you have secondary sources? Knowing your monthly financial capacity can help you achieve financial stability post-divorce.
What is My Credit Score? Now that it will be just you (at least for the foreseeable future), knowing your credit score will be very important. You will no longer be able to rely on your ex-spouse to balance out your credit score. As such, determining your credit score will allow you to help remedy any issues with the same and inform you of your resources for credit should you need it in the post-divorce world.
Should I Be Budgeting? One thing that is often overlooked by parties is the monthly expenses each incurs and the ability to pay these monthly expenses after divorce. Life is expensive, and if you have children, it’s even more expensive. As such, you must think of the future when planning your divorce, and one way to do this is budgeting. Ask yourself questions like “can I afford my current mortgage, electric, and insurance?” If the answer to these types of questions is “no”, you need to start considering ways to cut your budget. Budgeting can go a long way to ensure financial stability, and most importantly, peace of mind.
Divorces are emotional times for all involved. Not only are they emotional, but oftentimes complex, especially when it comes to property division. Obtaining skilled counsel is key to relieving some of the burden that comes with divorce. This blog was written by attorneys at Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. who handle divorces of all types throughout the state. It is written and posted for general educational purposes and is not to be construed as legal advice or solicitation for services. It is an advertisement.