Agreeing to a 50/50 split of investment accounts without considering the tax impact of different securities.
Divorce agreements can be as detailed or simple as you’d like – spouses who don’t understand the tax implications of the sale of different assets are at risk of being stuck with a large tax liability whereas the other spouse may walk away with tax-advantaged assets. The market value of these assets may be the same, but the tax bill on sale most definitely is not.
Not knowing what your basic living expense is
Do you have a budget in place and understand how much you spend on a monthly basis? Without an in-depth analysis of you and your spouse’s basic spending, how will you know what settlements you can afford to agree to?
Fighting to keep the marital home when you really can’t afford it.
Homes come with a lot of costs that many people don’t think about; property taxes, roof repairs, basic maintenance, home insurance – the list goes on and your mortgage payment is just the beginning. Understanding if keeping the family home is really in your best interest long term is essential to setting yourself up for success after your divorce is over.
Forgetting about the pension.
Do you or your spouse have a pension? The valuation of pensions are tricky and if you don’t know what the pension is worth to you in today’s dollars, what portion is marital, or how to protect that cash flow in the event of the pension owner’s death – you may be out of luck.
Thinking you can rely on spousal maintenance to afford your standard of living forever.
The laws around spousal maintenance / alimony are changing across the country. Its a mistake to assume that spousal maintenance won’t have an end date even in long-term marriages.
A CDFA® professional can help answer these questions for you and make sure that you have all of the information you need to make good decisions.