After you decide to divorce, it won’t be long before you’re thinking about what will happen to your asset and debts. More specifically, you want to secure as many assets as possible, while avoiding liabilities.
Organization is key to your success, so it’s critical to create an asset and debt division checklist before you move into the divorce process.
In regard to assets, you can structure your checklist as follows:
- Personal property: This includes assets such as furniture, electronics, clothing, antiques, guns, collectibles and all types of motor vehicles. Think about this category as assets that you keep in your home.
- Real estate: For most, this is the family home, but it can include other types of real estate such as vacation homes, rental property and land.
- Financial assets: This is the most valuable category for many couples, as it includes assets such as bank accounts, retirement accounts, life insurance cash values, stocks, bonds, certificates of deposits and educational accounts.
- Business assets: This is for a divorce in which one or both individuals is a business owner. Assets can include but are not always limited to business bank accounts, office furniture and equipment and commercial real estate.
As for debts, this greatly varies from one divorcing couple to the next, but think about things such as:
- Joint credit cards
- Car loans
- Personal loans
- Home equity loans or lines of credit
- Payday loans
As you create your asset and debt division checklist, there are two other details to keep in mind:
- You may have both joint and separate assets and debts
- Your ex could attempt to hide assets from you, hoping that they don’t become subject to division during your divorce
Both of these details require special attention, as you don’t want to overlook something that could cost you in the long run.
There is no shortage of questions to answer and challenges to overcome as you plan for your divorce. However, with an asset and debt division checklist guiding you, it’s much easier to feel confident as you move through the process. With this approach, you’ll have the confidence you need to make sound decisions as you protect your legal rights.