MARIETTA, Georgia. Divorce is ultimately a legal and financial separation. Some of the toughest questions divorcing couples need to answer involve divisions of assets, debts, and property. The Law Offices of Abbott & Abbott, P.C. are divorce lawyers in Marietta, Georgia who assist individuals facing a range of legal questions during divorce. Whether you have concerns about property division, division of assets, division of debts, or are facing a high-asset divorce, we can help you navigate your legal and financial questions. Here are six big money questions you should ask during divorce:
- Ask about what you own and what you owe. According to Forbes, it is important to gather documentation about your assets, liabilities, income, expenses, bank accounts, retirement funds, and real estate. Knowing where your family stands financially can lead to smoother negotiations and settlements.
- Ask about taxes when dividing assets. Some assets come with high tax burdens while others come with little to no tax burdens. Before agreeing to any division of assets, check the tax burden to ensure that the division is, in fact, equitable.
- Ask about how to divide your IRA without penalty. You are permitted to split an IRA, but you’ll need to transfer money properly in order to avoid a penalty. The law allows divorcing individuals to split or transfer IRA money within one year of getting a divorce. When planning how to divide assets, make sure you’re considering your retirement funds as well. According to Forbes, if you fail to categorize an IRA transfer as “incident to divorce” you could face early withdrawal penalties.
- Ask about the cost of maintaining your house. In the early negotiation stages of your divorce, you may want to keep the house. Yet, it is important to know how much you’ll owe in property tax and mortgage payments. Some individuals choose to keep the house, not aware that they cannot afford mortgage payments on their own. In some cases, it makes more sense to sell and split the assets than to try to keep up with an expensive mortgage.
- Think about money you have now and money you’ll have later. Some investments cannot be accessed for many years. An IRA, for instance, may only be of value to you when you retire. Other assets will be available to you right away. Consider your income, what you’ll need post-divorce, and the value of immediate liquid assets. In some cases, it makes sense to settle for less, if it means you’ll have access to the money today. In other instances, if you can support yourself on your own income, you may be able to get more later, if you give up a little more readily accessible cash now.
- Ask yourself to wait. Divorce can be emotionally challenging for all parties involved. You’ll want to finalize everything quickly so you and your children can move forward with your lives. However, it is important to remember that the decisions you make during your divorce can affect your family’s financial health for years to come. Take time to consider your financial situation and to negotiate a settlement that is in your best interests.
The Marietta, Georgia divorce lawyers at the Law Offices of Abbott & Abbott, P.C. work closely with individuals who are going through divorce. We can help resolve a range of complex financial and legal questions that arise during divorce.