By Jenny Page
Financial Stability After Divorce
While Millennials have proven to be a boon for the marriage statistics, this sentiment cannot be echoed for the over fifties. Baby Boomers experienced a 109% increase in divorces from 1990 to 2015, which is quite an alarming increase. At this point in life, it’s time to think about retirement, finish off debt, and perhaps even plan that elusive boat cruise to the Bahamas. Instead, couples are scrambling for cash in order to get divorced. This is the time to act fast to ensure minimal damage.
Disclose Your Assets Fully
This might seem like a time to hide money under the mattress and open an account in the Cayman Islands, but this can turn out to become a major headache if discovered. Denise Rossi is the poster child for successful litigation regarding the failure to disclose assets, as she was ordered by a judge to pay over her $1,3 million lottery winnings to her ex-husband for failing to disclose these winnings prior to their divorce. While this is an extreme ruling, it sets the precedent and highlights the importance of full disclosure. Rossi didn’t admit these winnings to her attorney either, who would have advised her of the folly of her decision. For her, 50% would have been better than nothing at all.
Downscale Spending, Increase Income, And Separate Finances
Once talks of divorce or separation happen or notice gets served, it’s important that couples close any joint accounts they may have. For many, this is also the time where they may have to find their first job take a step down in terms of lifestyle. Those who are anguished about losing their family home and lifestyle, will need to develop coping mechanisms in order to deal with the emotional turmoil the loss of financial standing might bring. This is integral to move on in life. The important thing is to start creating space in the budget to alleviate anxiety and stress, and if this means finding a property slightly smaller than the existing one, it might just be a better move overall.
Regain Your Financial Footing
After her divorce, motivational speaker and mother Heather Monahan admits to being financially wiped out. While it was easy to get demotivated, she quickly pulled herself together and formulated a plan. This involved increasing her income, setting small and achievable financial goals, and taking advantage of specials and free offers. For Heather, the biggest obstacle to overcome is the fear of the unknown future, but instead of caving, her hard work and perseverance now means that she gets to encourage others who struggle with various aspects of their lives, including finding a better job.
After a divorce, the overwhelming sense of loss is quickly replaced with financial panic. By setting goals and staying on top of the financial responsibilities, it’s easier to navigate through the options one item at a time.