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Understand your financial accounts before divorce negotiations

Getting divorced in California can seem complicated, especially when it comes to discussing property division. Many couples worry about how their finances will be affected after the divorce, and one of the most common battles spouses go through during divorce involves money.

Since the divorce process can be stressful at times, spouses should educate themselves on their finances before asset division negotiations. Understanding what financial accounts you share and which accounts are separate can help you prepare for life after the divorce. 

If you are getting divorced, what can you do to prepare for property division negotiations? First, you should organize your financial documents to make sure you know what accounts are in your name, shared and in your ex's name. You should make a list of your bank accounts, credit card accounts, retirement accounts and any investment accounts. You should also become familiar with any debt in your name or your spouse's name.

Once you know about your financial accounts, you should look at how your income will change after the divorce and create a new budget. This can help you prepare for life after the divorce and put you on a path to a better financial future. 

You may also want to check your credit score to make sure you are aware of any debt or accounts in your name. If there are mistakes, you can request to have your credit report fixed. 

The financial impact of divorce can be difficult to understand. However, following these tips can help you prepare for asset division negotiations and create a budget for life after divorce. Planning for divorce can be complex so it may be best to consult a divorce attorney for specific advice and guidance. 

Source: The Huffington Post, "Divorce Confidential: The Importance of Being Financially Savvy During Divorce," Caroline Choi, April 18, 2014

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