For spouses in North Carolina who are going through a divorce, it can be important to get finances in order. If one spouse handles most of the family accounts, the separation process could be especially difficult for the other partner. It's often best to wait until after the necessary paperwork is obtained before bringing a divorce up. Otherwise, the more financially aware spouse could make it difficult to access the documents.
First, a soon-to-be ex should find out the family's total income. This could include a salary, bonuses and income from other sources such as investments. A tax return may provide this information. One should also know what debts the couple has, including credit card and mortgage debt. This information may be included on a credit report. Finally, it's important to make a list of all monthly expenses. This should include childcare costs, educational expenses, health care expenses and any incidental expenses. A parent should also consider what future child-related expenses may arise. This may include college tuition.
Some of this information can help determine the level of child support payments. The percentage of time each parent spends with the child is generally also a factor in determining the payment amounts. Most often, it is the noncustodial parent who pays the custodial parent.
An attorney might be able to review some of this paperwork and give a client a sense of what might happen in terms of property division, child custody and child support. All of these issues might be worked out in negotiations instead of going to court. If parents cannot reach a decision about child custody and must go to litigation, they may need to provide additional documents, such as visitation logs.