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Financial Points to Consider During Divorce

By Sheryl Rentz on April 8, 2013

During your first meetings with an experienced Pennsylvania divorce attorney, you’ll begin to discuss your financial situation.  In some ways, divorce is like splitting up a business partnership: both processes focus on dividing assets and debts in a way that neither unfairly rewards nor unfairly burdens either party.

If you’re considering divorce or have recently filed for divorce, here are a few financial points you’ll want to consider:

  • Bank Accounts. Joint bank accounts (in both your name and your spouse’s name) can often be divided equally, especially if both parties agree this division is fair.  If you don’t typically keep an eye on your household’s shared accounts, now is a good time to start.
  • Investments. Stocks, bonds, and similar investments will also have to be considered and, if necessary, divided during the divorce.  You may also decide to give one spouse the lion’s share of the investments if the other spouse gets another major asset, such as the house.
  • Credit Cards. Often, the best way to address joint credit cards is to pay off any outstanding balances and cancel the cards.  Each spouse can then take out a new card in his or her own name, ensuring the other spouse is not responsible for his or her spending. If paying off and closing the cards isn’t possible, the debt will have to be dealt with during the divorce.
  • Insurance. Health care coverage, as well as prepaid insurance like life insurance or auto insurance policies, is also an asset that belongs to the marriage and needs to be considered when creating a divorce settlement.

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