Heymann & Fletcher

Joint accounts important to address during divorce

Financial upheaval is a common occurrence for those who are getting divorced in the state of New Jersey. After all, the parties generally have to learn how to survive on less. Moreover, one party may be paying alimony or child support. A couple of tips may be helpful for coping financially with the divorce process.

First, it can be helpful to get all of one's assets in one's own name. If one is keeping the family home, this means refinancing the home mortgage to get the name of one's ex-spouse off the loan. This involves applying for the home loan and submitting the documentation necessary to underwrite the loan, but unlike applying for a loan for the first time, the lender this time will not examine the credit and income of the other spouse. The inability to qualify for refinancing the mortgage may limit one's options with regard to keeping the marital home.

Another important step in protecting oneself during divorce is to cancel all joint accounts. This includes getting rid of all credit cards that have been issued in both parties' names. Other jointly shared accounts to address are those associated with leases, insurance, utilities and auto loans.

Getting divorced can be complicated, both emotionally and financially. However, understanding one's rights can help with fighting for one's fair share of assets during a New Jersey divorce proceeding. The parties may actually be able to achieve a mutually satisfactory settlement at the negotiating table or through mediation, thus avoiding further court intrusion.

Source: khou.com, "9 things you should do after a divorce to save your finances", Janet Berry-Johnson, Jan. 19, 2017

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