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Texans should tally assets and debt when negotiating a divorce

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Couples going through divorce in Texas are surely aware of the emotional toll of dissolving a marriage. But there is also the very real possibility that one's financial situation can take a hit during the negotiations over the division of marital property, not to mention the new prospect of living on a single income. That is why couples should consider evaluating all of their assets in detail before finalizing a divorce.

While the home is usually the largest asset a couple has, there are also other assets that could be overlooked during the process but which may actually come into play during the settlement. For instance, some people fail to consider stock options, retirement accounts and even pension plans. Even though some of these items may not be joint marital property, they may still be considered for an equitable division of assets in a divorce in which one party is shown to be at fault.

Examining individual and shared debts can also help clarify divorce negotiations. For example, looking at credit card debt or loans may help determine who is responsible for what portion. It could also be beneficial to pay down debt as much as possible before filing for divorce. Doing so could help lessen the liability on both parties.

Honestly assessing one's spending habits is also a good idea when negotiating a divorce settlement. Knowing exactly what is spent may help both sides determine if the other will actually need the assets being sought. People tend to be surprised when confronted with exactly how much money is spent, but taking the time to track expenditures can clarify matters for both parties in the short as well as the long term.

Source: Fox Business, "Five Things to Know About Your Finances Before a Divorce," Cindy Vanegas, May 4, 2012

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