Every divorce comes with challenges. For those with significant assets – such as family-owned businesses or hefty retirement accounts – the greatest challenges are typically financial in nature. Making the wrong decisions during the Ohio property division process can endanger your financial stability for many years to come.
For this reason, it is critical to avoid any divorce-related missteps that could threaten your best interests down the road. Wendy Spencer, president of Spencer Capital Strategies, mentions several of the most common financial traps to avoid in her USA Today article. Here are three of those traps:
1. Keeping real property that you can no longer afford. When you were living on two incomes, it was much easier to make mortgage payments, keep up with property taxes, pay utility bills and generally maintain a larger home. After divorce, when you are down to one income, keeping the family home may not be a realistic option. The house may have great sentimental value attached to it, but it’s critical to evaluate whether or not you can truly afford it. If not, it may make more sense to let your ex-spouse keep it, or you may decide to sell it and split the proceeds.
2. Failing to look a few decades down the road. While it may seem like a sensible choice to trade your share of the 401(k) accounts for the money in the joint bank account, making such a decision now could create a financial crisis later, when you reach retirement age. Working with skilled financial planners and legal professionals is key.
3. Forgetting to be creative. When it comes to crafting a property division agreement or divorce settlement agreement, the options are nearly endless. Working with an experienced divorce lawyer, you may be able to negotiate a unique resolution that truly accomplishes your goals. For instance, you may let your ex-spouse claim your son as a yearly tax exemption in exchange for letting you keep the SUV and boat.
To learn more about how to avoid the serious financial landmines associated with divorce, consult a knowledgeable lawyer in your area. He or she can provide the detailed, personalized guidance you require.