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Protecting Yourself Financially Before Filing for Divorce

Posted on in Divorce

Rolling Meadows marital property division lawyerWhen a married couple decides to get a divorce, their assets will be divided between them. In Illinois, this can be done between the two parties out of court, but if an agreement cannot be reached, then the court steps in with a system called equitable distribution. This system intends to divide properly fairly, but it does not mean that all assets are divided equally. Some of the factors used to determine how to divide marital property include:

  • The distribution of wealth
  • The length of the marriage
  • The couple’s standard of living
  • Future parental responsibility 
  • The health, income, and age of the individuals 

With these factors, it is still important to take action before your divorce to protect yourself financially, because the outcomes of these decisions are often uncertain. 

Know Your Finances

Before the divorce process begins, it will help to learn as much as you can about your personal finances. Begin tracking how much you earn, how much you spend, and any future expenses. Start creating a budget focused around necessities such as food, shelter, and medical care for yourself and your children. Use previous statements, bank records, and records of expenses to plan for the future. All of this information will not only help you, but it can be used to demonstrate your financial needs to the court when dividing marital property. 

Plan for Your Future

Court decisions regarding equitable distribution are unpredictable, and they can be affected by the income earned by both spouses. If you are unemployed or only employed part-time, it would be wise to search the job market to determine whether you can increase your means of income post-divorce. Most full-time employment also comes with health insurance, which can be helpful if you currently rely on your spouse's plan. 

Planning to further your education or get a trade license can help in the long term when searching for a job or career. However, it is best to keep large expenses to a minimum. Starting to pay tuition or large fees may not work in your favor when it comes to the division of assets, and incurring large expenses after filing for divorce may even result in criminal contempt charges.  

Seek Legal Council 

Consulting with an attorney is essential for ensuring that your rights are protected during your divorce. Your lawyer will provide invaluable council about how to resolve disputes over the division of assets, as well as issues such as child custody (parental responsibility), spousal maintenance, and child support. A good attorney can reduce your stress by focusing on the legal issues and representing your interests in court, which allows you to keep up with your family responsibilities as you work to dissolve your marriage. 

Contact a Palatine Divorce Lawyer

Divorce is difficult, but with the right preparation, you can make sure your legal and financial issues are addressed and begin the next phase of your life on the right foot. The experienced Barrington divorce attorneys at Anderson and Associates, P.C. will work with you throughout the divorce process, ensuring that your rights and interests are protected. Call our office at 847-995-9999 to schedule an initial consultation.




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