Getting divorced is always stressful, but the process is often less fraught when you don’t have children. If you live in Pennsylvania and plan to end your marriage, your concerns will likely be about financial issues.
Splitting finances in divorce
Even without the considerations that parents have, conflict can arise related to the following financial issues:
Determining marital assets
The courts distinguish between the assets belonging to one spouse and assets that the spouses own together. These latter assets are known as the marital estate. Determining whether the assets belong to both spouses or just one can get complicated. An example of this would be a spouse who owns their own home before getting married. While the home belongs to them, if income from both spouses is used to pay the mortgage, make repairs or have the home remodeled, the home may be considered marital property.
Dividing marital debt
If the couple has debt, such as joint credit cards or a loan taken out together, the couple will have to sort out who takes responsibility for the debt. Divorce does not prevent creditors from seeking payment from both spouses, regardless of what the divorce decree says, which makes debt during divorce a complicated matter.
Investment and retirement accounts
Couples with pensions or investments will have to sort out their division at the time of the divorce. In addition, both spouses should update their beneficiaries on all employee benefit plans and insurance policies after their divorce.
Selling the marital home
Couples who own a home have some decisions to make. In many cases, selling the home and dividing the proceeds, if any, is the most efficient way to do so. However, a spouse may want to remain in the home. In such cases, negotiations are necessary to ensure an equitable division.
Divorces can be challenging regardless of your status. If you are child-free and getting divorced, don’t overlook the importance of obtaining a fair settlement so that you can start your new life from a position of financial health.