Getting a divorce can cause immense upheaval in anyone’s life. As a relatively well-off individual, you may have particular concerns about what will happen to your assets during your case. Because Florida is an equitable division state, it is likely that the court will divide your assets between you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse as fairly as possible unless you implemented a prenuptial agreement or other measures to address such a scenario.
If you did not prepare beforehand, you do not have to feel out of luck. Now is as good a time as any to start getting ready for your pending divorce. In particular, you may want to assess your financial matters and possible protective steps.
How can you protect your assets?
Protecting assets before and during a divorce does not have to seem overly complicated. Some first steps you can take include the following:
- Close joint credit accounts: If you have open joint accounts, it is possible that your spouse could run up the credit bill leaving you both on the line for outstanding balances.
- Avoid new debt: Closing joint accounts will help keep your spouse from creating new debt for which you could be liable, and you can take measures to avoid accruing new debt yourself in order to save money.
- Open a personal bank account: Like most married couples, you likely had a joint checking account with your spouse. Now is the time to open a personal account into which you can start depositing money you intend to keep separate.
- Protect your valuables: You may feel that you need to remove valuable assets from the marital home in order to protect them, but remember, you should not attempt to hide assets in efforts to keep them or sell them before property division proceedings have taken place.
- Increase your financial literacy: If you have professionals who usually handle your financial affairs or even simply let your spouse handle those matters, now is the time to become more financially literate and understand your personal affairs.
Certain laws prevent you from simply taking what you want when you know that divorce is coming, but you can also allow the law to work for you when it comes time to divide property. Working with an experienced divorce attorney could allow you to better understand state property distribution laws and the steps you can take to get what you want out of your case.