If you have made the decision to split from your spouse then you have a lot on your mind. You worry about the children. You question what the future will bring. You sit in your room and look around. The life that you’ve built will be dismantled and then reassembled. Pieces of your life will be packed into boxes. You start to think about everything you own. Perhaps you consider what you will keep and what he will take.
You can’t help but wonder how the divorce will impact you financially. Will he try to take something that you think is yours? What about child support and alimony?
You might want to create a statement of net worth. This document outlines your finances and expenses. It can help with determining how assets are divided and any support obligations.
In order to complete the statement you will need:
- Any financial statements-investments, loans, etc.
- A list of household expenses-utilities, insurance, etc.
- Tax returns-from the past three years
- Expenses that your children require-extracurricular activities, care costs, etc.
- A list of personal assets-jewelry, antiques, etc.
You will want to prepare yourself for the divorce. You will want to make sure you know as much as possible about your finances. If you think that your spouse may try to hide any assets, you should be vigilant.
As you delve into your finances, you can watch for these red flags:
- Your spouse becomes secretive and wants total control over money
- Financial statements no longer arrive at home, but are forwarded elsewhere
- Your spouse opens a PO box
- Your spouse opens new accounts and doesn’t tell you
- Your spouse changes spending habits
- Financial documents start to get stored and filed in a new way
These behaviors don’t necessarily mean your spouse is hiding assets. You should try to communicate with your spouse. Ask questions regarding these items. If you do suspect that your spouse is hiding assets you should seek professional assistance. Do your best to adequately prepare yourself for the divorce. Keep your children and their emotions in mind as you take action to build a new future.