If you think divorce is in your future, follow these tips to protect yourself and help maintain current and future financial stability:
- If your spouse has been the breadwinner, determine how you will support yourself and, possibly, your children if your spouse cuts you off financially.
- You will need money to retain an attorney. Begin putting money away, apply for a credit card or ask for a personal loan from a friend or family member.
- Cut expenses wherever you can.
- Gather financial information. Your attorney will want a list of your liquid accounts. Obtain statements for bank accounts and the like. It will be important to know how much money you have in all of your accounts prior to and, at the date of, separation. Gathering these documents in advance will prevent your spouse from getting away with any last minute withdrawals.
- The same goes for all other assets. A comprehensive list of assets with corresponding statements will be invaluable. This includes any retirement accounts of yours or your spouses.
- If you have debts, a list of credit cards will be helpful. If you are unsure what debts you have accrued, run a credit report to get a complete list.
- If you have a low credit score, now is the time to start building it up. Get a bank account and credit card in your name to begin building your credit.
- Begin your search for a divorce attorney. Meet with at least three attorneys before you make your decision. Be sure that you communicate well with your attorney. Review their online listings for positive or negative client reviews.