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3 tips for remaining financially secure during your divorce

It is no secret that getting a divorce can be costly. The property division process alone can have a significant effect on your financial future. While you may be experiencing emotional turmoil, it is crucial to not lose sight of the money aspect of divorce.

Luckily, you can minimize the financial burden of your divorce. Follow these guidelines to keep your finances stable as you leave your spouse.

3 effects of divorce on chidren

If you are facing a divorce and have children, you are likely concerned about how the divorce will affect them. This is a common question among divorcing parents, and experts have a lot to say on the subject.

There are many different ways that children cope with a divorce, and a lot also depends on their ages. Here are three frequent effects of divorce on children and some tips on how you can help ease the process for them:

Gray divorces and splitting assets

According to data from the Pew Research Center, older couples in North Carolina and the rest of the United States have been getting divorced at a rate that is twice what it was in the 1900s. People over the age of 50 and who are near retirement will find it particularly important to know how to properly divide their assets, especially their retirement assets, during the divorce process.

In order to properly split a 401(k) plan or pension, it will be necessary to obtain a qualified domestic relations order. This legal document details the right of a divorcing spouse to obtain a portion or all of the accountholder's plan. After the QDRO is given to the administrator of the plan, the specified amount will be transferred to the divorcing spouse.

Self-reflection and education could ease conflict during divorce

When North Carolina couples decide to end their marriage, they enter an emotionally challenging time that also requires navigating long-term financial decisions. Individuals will experience a spectrum of feelings that tend to follow the order of shock, anger, resentment and acceptance. Mindful attempts to identify feelings and motivations could help people balance their emotions with logic when negotiating the terms of a divorce and setting up a single-income household.

People who honestly consider their answers to questions regarding their emotional state might recognize that they need to apply more logic to their decisions. They might overcome the natural urge to win at a divorce when they set priorities and focus on a fresh start for the future.

More young people seeking prenups

An increasing number of young people marrying in North Carolina and across the country is also making use of prenuptial agreements, according to a lawyers' organization. The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers said that over the past 20 years, the frequency of prenuptial agreements has quintupled among people of all ages. However, in the past several years, the number of millennials in the 18 to 34 age range requesting prenups has grown in particular.

The matrimonial attorneys attributed this rising interest in prenuptial agreements to several factors, including the fact that many young people marry at later ages than people in the past. This means that they often have significant assets, careers or businesses before marriage, so the financial aspects of a prenup can be particularly compelling. In particular, people may want to protect their stake in a startup business or the retirement funds they have accumulated in the workplace. Men marry at an average age of 29 and women at 27, an increase of three and four years respectively over the average age in the 1980s.

These assets are commonly neglected in divorce settlements

When you are getting divorced, one of the main things you go through is the property division process. This may be the most significant and consequential aspect of your divorce.

You are probably prepared to divide the following assets:

  • The family home
  • Cars
  • Boats
  • Bank accounts
  • Estates
  • Retirement plans
  • Stock options

Six financial surprises women may experience during a divorce

While some divorces in North Carolina present very few surprises, this isn't always the case. According to an online marketplace survey, nearly half of all divorced women surveyed reported experiencing financial surprises. The study involved nearly 2,000 adult women who were either about to start the divorce process, going through it or already divorced. More than 20 percent of the participants were women 55 or older although Gen X and millennial women also participated.

As far as what constitutes an "unpleasant surprise" during a divorce, some women may not be fully aware of the marital debt, such as expenses related to the primary home mortgage and 401(k) loans. Divorcing women sometimes also fail to have a plan in place for returning to the workforce while others assume that alimony and child support payments will be higher or last longer. Additional financial surprises may involve ownership of the marital home, costs associated with health insurance coverage and failure to anticipate costs associated with getting a divorce.

Financial discord could lead to divorce

In North Carolina and around the country, financial difficulties continue to be one of the leading causes of divorce. One may think that only low-income earners are prone to money problems, but professional couples earning substantial wages can have financial issues too. While there are a multitude of underlying reasons that money is a factor in divorce cases, a major obstacle that couples face is a lack of financial planning.

If couples are on the same page when it comes to their finances, it may help strengthen their marriage. In many families, one partner typically handles paying the bills, but each partner should understand the complete financial situation of the household. Couples might develop a workable economic plan together or seek the expertise of a financial advisor.

3 tips for co-parenting after a divorce

Divorce is a difficult and emotional process for anyone, but if you and your spouse have children, a lot of the real work begins only after the divorce is final. That is because the hard job of co-parenting requires the two of you to follow a parenting and custody plan as outlined in the divorce agreement or court order, during a time when you would probably rather not have to remain in contact.

Co-parenting is a challenge, and it is not easy to do it well. However, there are some tips that can help you move forward in co-parenting together with your former spouse, so that your children will benefit from your efforts.

Divorce can have a major impact on retirement

While many North Carolina spouses going through divorce may be aware that the separation process can have an impact on their immediate finances, the effects may actually be more long term. Depending on how close one is to retirement, for example, their preretirement standard of living may not be maintainable.

The Center for Retirement developed the National Retirement Risk Index in 2006 to determine how many working-age households are at risk of being unable to maintain their preretirement standard of living after they stop working. It was shown that approximately half of all American households may not be able to maintain their same standard of living once they stop working. However, those who have gone through a divorce had a greater risk by 7 percent.

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