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Prioritizing divorce issues can ensure future stability

Connecticut residents who are going through a divorce can easily become overwhelmed by the range of decisions that need to be made and adjustments that are required. It can be difficult to know where to begin. However, when it comes to divorce issues, some items are simply more important than others, and finances rank at the top of the list. Being able to correctly prioritize can mean the difference between stability and uncertainty in months and years following the split.

One mistake commonly made, and made particularly by women who are divorcing, is to not have access to adequate money or credit before filing for divorce. There will be initial expenses involved, and having the ability to cover those needs is crucial. Women should always maintain a separate bank account and at least one credit card, even if divorce does not seem to be on the horizon.

Another necessity is to take stock of all assets and debts. This includes a comprehensive list of all assets that are held jointly within the marriage and separately. A similar list of debts should be compiled. Having a clear understanding of where the family finances stand will make it easier to work through issues of property division when the time comes.

Perhaps the most important preparation involves knowing your rights under Connecticut law. Divorce law varies from state to state, and can shift over time. Be sure to go into a divorce with at least a strong estimate of what you will emerge with, as your future financial security will depend on the choices made during this busy and tumultuous time. While it may seem like a daunting task, addressing these and other important divorce issues at the onset of the process can make a huge difference in the outcome.

Source: Forbes, "Three Types of Financial Mistakes Divorcing Women Make (And How to Avoid Them)," Jeff Landers, Nov. 27, 2012

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