5 Tips to Protect Assets during Divorce

If you want to protect assets in divorce, there are several different things that you could potentially do (with your options depending, to a degree, upon which state you live in). While you will not be able to shelter your assets from being divided, you can limit the total of the assets that are wasted or taken unlawfully by your spouse. Here are a few tips to protect assets during a divorce.

1. Determine Value

If you want to make sure that you get your fair share of the marital assets, determining their value is an essential step in the process. If you have real estate together, you should consider having it appraised by a real estate appraiser. If you have collectibles or other valuable pieces of property, you should consider getting those appraised as well. This way, you will know exactly how much you should be entitled to if the assets are divided evenly.

2. Gather Records

It is also important that you gather as many financial records as you possibly can. You need to get bank statements, investment account statements and other records that could be important to your financial situation. If your spouse tries to hide some of the money or spend it before the divorce can finalize, you will have accurate records to prove this. Sometimes, without financial statements, it can be very difficult to get your fair share of the marital assets.

3. Close Joint Bank Accounts

If you have a joint bank account with your spouse, you might want to close it immediately. Depending on state laws, you may have to wait until a certain point in the process before you can do this. However, if you are eligible to close out your joint bank account, it is typically advisable to do so. You can split the money in the account evenly and give half of it to your spouse. You will then be able to make sure that your half of the money is protected and that he or she cannot spend it.

4. Close Joint Credit Cards

If you have joint credit cards with your spouse, you might want to consider closing them out immediately. Sometimes during a divorce, a spouse can get vindictive and try to run up large credit card balances in order to hurt the other person. To avoid this scenario, you should close out your joint credit cards as soon as possible.

5. Judgment

If you are in the middle of the divorce process, you might be able to get a court order that prevents your spouse from spending any of the marital assets. This might come in the form of a judgment or restraining order from the court. This way, you can protect the assets as much as possible until the final ruling from the court comes down.

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