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Preparing a post-divorce financial life

A divorce is not only the end of a marriage, it is also the beginning of a new life for each party. When going through a divorce, it is important to look to the future when negotiating a property settlement. This requires a thorough look at a Utah couple's finances.

All of the assets and liabilities of the couple need to be both accounted for and have their true value determined. When it comes to a couple's joint liabilities, creditors are not going to abide by a divorce settlement. Debts either need to be settled before the divorce is final, or the party that will not be responsible for that debt needs to be removed from it. This will preclude the possibility of a creditor coming back to that party for payment if the other party fails to pay the obligation.

When dividing assets, it may be beneficial to have them appraised to ensure that any division is equitable. When it comes to assets such as investment or retirement accounts, the balance on the account is not the only indicator is its value. The impact of taxes on these accounts could drastically change their value, which may require some sort of set-off with either property or cash to ensure that one person is not unjustly enriched.

Each party to a divorce has the right to receive everything to which he or she is entitled. At the same time a Utah couple is deconstructing their marriage, they are also working to give themselves the best chance possible at a financially stable future. This could require each party to pay significant attention not only to what the marital assets and liabilities are, but also to the best way to divide them that will allow each party to walk away feeling as though he or she was treated fairly.

Source: MarketWatch, "Divorce? The 6 worst money mistakes", Leslie Thompson, Sept. 23, 2014

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