Essential Tips for Protecting Your Finances in a Divorce

Divorce remains a relatively common part of life. According to data from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), approximately 25,000 couples get divorced in the state each year. Of course, that statistic does not make divorce any easier for the person going through it. There are many complex legal, logistical, and financial matters that must be addressed. Protecting your finances is one of the keys to successfully navigating the divorce process. Here, our Chicago divorce lawyer offers five essential tips for managing your finances in a divorce in Illinois.

Carefully Organize All of Your Financial Information

Proper organization is one of the keys to protecting your finances in a divorce in Illinois. At the outset of the process, you should carefully gather and organize all of your financial information. The more comprehensive the documents and records you have, the better position that you will be in: 

  • Wage and income transcripts; 
  • Bank statements;
  • Recent tax returns; 
  • Property and mortgage records; 
  • Investment accounts; 
  • Retirement accounts; 
  • Debt/loan records

Know Your Duty to Make Disclosures Under Illinois Law

In Illinois, each party to a divorce is required to make comprehensive financial disclosures to their spouse. Among other things, parties to a divorce must disclose their: 

  • Income; 
  • Assets; 
  • Property; and
  • Debts. 

Failure to make adequate financial disclosures could result in sanctions, potentially even including the award of an unequal distribution of assets.  

Hire a Divorce Attorney With the Right Financial Expertise

You should look for a divorce lawyer with the right financial expertise to handle your case. If you have especially complex property, assets, or debts, it is crucial that you work with a Chicago, IL divorce attorney who has the expertise to protect your finances. 

Start the Process of Disentangling Your Finances

You do not have to wait until your divorce is finalized to start the process of disentangling your finances in Illinois. While you need to be careful—meaning you should avoid taking major action or wasting joint funds—it is a good time to open up a separate bank account and begin making changes. 

Create and Follow a Budget During and After Your Divorce

Finally, you need to create and follow a budget during and after your divorce. A divorce is a major life change; your financial needs and your financial situation will be different going forward. It is imperative that you make the proper adjustments to put yourself in the best position to thrive. 

Schedule a Confidential Consultation With a Chicago Divorce Lawyer

At Hammer Serna & Quinn, LLC, our Chicago divorce attorney has the professional skills and financial experience to protect your assets. Connect with us today to schedule a confidential, no-obligation consultation. From our law office in Chicago, we help clients navigate divorce and family law issues in Cook County and throughout all of Northern Illinois.

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