For many, the idea of starting the year out with a divorce is not a pleasant one, but it is also not uncommon. While no two situations are exactly alike, there are certain things that all may want to consider.
Take Financial Action
The first concerns finances. Because divorce often results in a new financial reality it is important to get the best possible settlement. Taking action early on in the process might help with that. Closing joint accounts as quickly as possible and paying close attention to any transactions that go through on those accounts that need to stay open is also a good idea. Adverse action taken by your ex could affect your credit report.
Make an Adjustment of Power
If your spouse is your healthcare surrogate, has power of attorney, or is on other, similar types of legal documents, it’s time to take them off and choose someone else. Do that right away, even before the divorce is final, because you don’t want someone you’re divorcing making those kinds of decisions for you should it become necessary. Instead, select a trusted family member or friend, so you can get some peace of mind. If you don’t have healthcare documents such as a living will go ahead and get them created. That limits the power your spouse would have if something should happen to you before the divorce.
Focus on Your Future
Everything from your estate plan to your investment strategies should be carefully considered. How do these things need to be changed now that you will be single? Go ahead and start making those changes, as long as they don’t affect your spouse financially, so you can start preparing for a future where your income and other financial factors may be quite different. A qualified divorce lawyer can help guide you through the process.