It’s easy to overlook important parts of the property division process; after all, this is probably the first time you’ve gone through a divorce. Everything is new, the process can be stressful, and you just want to get it over with. However, you don’t want to make mistakes that will cost you in the long run, so it’s wise to consider the following points:
— Almost all of what you own can be divided. Some people mistakenly believe that they can’t claim something that is in their spouse’s name, but bank accounts, retirement funds and other such things may still count as marital property. It also doesn’t typically matter who earned the money; if you were married when it was earned, you both generally have a claim.
— Assets should never be hidden. You’re supposed to declare everything that you own when you file for divorce, and lying about your declarations or trying hide assets in places you think will be traced to you is illegal. People sometimes don’t realize how serious this can be, just assuming they’ve had a brilliant idea to protect what is theirs.
— Your spending could be frozen by the court. As soon as you file for divorce, you may be told not to make anything that counts as a major purchase — like buying a new car. This is to keep you or your spouse from trying to waste money to avoid splitting it up, and to make the division process easier. If you need to buy a car or anything else of this nature, you may need to do it before officially filing for divorce.
These are just three important points you don’t want to overlook, but there are many more. Make sure you do your research, understand your rights and know what legal options you have.
Source: Huffington Post, “40 Secrets Only Divorce Attorneys Know,” accessed Nov. 18, 2016