The relationship between you and your spouse has run its course and divorce is on the horizon. While this can be challenging and signals the end of one chapter in your life, it also has the potential to be the beginning of a new and exciting chapter.
Being prepared for your divorce should make the entire process go much more smoothly, particularly in terms of property division. You’ll need to have a clear idea of your financial circumstances and those of your spouse.
From there, you may be able to negotiate a settlement with your spouse. Otherwise, the court will step in and divide property according to the community property rules of Washington state. Here are a few ways to get ahead of your divorce financially:
Gather your financial documents
To gain a clear picture of your financial circumstances, the court will need to see the paperwork. This includes bank statements, savings accounts, pay stubs, retirement accounts and tax returns.
If either spouse goes into proceedings without the relevant paperwork, the divorce is likely to drag on and it could become contentious.
Keep an eye on your expenses
Ideally, you don’t want to be making any significant purchases while the divorce is ongoing. You don’t want it to appear like you are trying to hide or squander assets. It’s also important not to take away too much from your post-divorce budget.
Adjusting to your financial situation post-divorce can be challenging, so the less you spend during proceedings the better.
Seeking legal guidance at the earliest opportunity will also help you to develop a strategy for your divorce. Remember, preparation is the key to settling things as efficiently and amicably as possible.