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Financial aspect of divorce impacts one's future

Although the emotional aspect of divorce often receives great attention, the financial aspect is also extremely important for Illinois residents. This is particularly the case for divorcing individuals whose spouses were the chief breadwinners. A few tips can help those going through a divorce to take the steps needed to protect their financial futures.

First, it is wise to gather one's financial information. This includes collecting estate-planning documents, as well as information on insurance, balances on credit cards, investment and bank accounts, and outstanding property-related loans. This information is important when dealing with matters such as child support, spousal support, paying outstanding debts and dividing marital assets.

Second, it is imperative that a divorcing person establish his or her individual credit. The person would benefit from opening at least a single major credit card, immediately using it and closing any joint accounts that he or she has with a spouse. It is also wise to consider one's long- and short-term financial needs, including living expenses required each month and even college costs for one's children, as well as one's own future retirement needs.

Finances are often a major point of contention during a divorce. However, if both parties agree to work together through the process using alternative dispute resolution methods, such as mediation, they may be able to avoid the stress often tied to divorce litigation. Working together with proper legal guidance may increase an Illinois couple's chances of achieving an equitable and fair settlement -- one that will benefit both parties in the years ahead.

Source: millionairecorner.com, "The Money Matters Surrounding Divorce", Kent McDill, March 2, 2015

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