Every family has its own way of operating. In some cases one spouse will stay home while the other one works. When the marriage comes to an end, both sides have different concerns. We will cover what each spouse should do leading up to a divorce to protect themselves throughout the process. In this post we will focus on the spouse who does not have a high paying job.
For those who have stopped working to care for their family, a big concern will probably be establishing alimony. There are several things that individuals in this position can do to make sure they get what they deserve in a divorce. The first is to be aware of how the family finances work. This is important even when a marriage is solid because as a couple, the couple, not individuals alone, is liable for debts. Likewise, the same would be true if a there were any mistakes on a tax return. An important part of being aware of family finances is knowing how much your spouse makes and the nature and extent of his or her assets.
Knowing household expenses is also important. In fact, staying on top of the household budget and not spending more than a couple has, could keep a marriage from falling apart in the first place. This is because issues with money are often what causes a marriage to fail.
While there is nothing wrong with signing a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, it should not be done without first having an independent lawyer review it to make sure its terms are completely understood.
Last, just because one spouse stays home to care for the home and family, they should not completely leave behind the professional network they were once a part of. Should a divorce occur, taking those actions could make it much easier to get back into a career.
In our next post we will shift gears and cover what spouses who have money should take into consideration when preparing to divorce.