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Dealing with the financial consequences of divorce

People in Virginia who are going through a divorce may want to consider working with a financial planner or a certified divorce financial analyst along with an attorney. These financial professionals may help in determining what a person's assets are and how to budget for the divorce and its aftermath.

The first step should be listing all assets and gathering documentation on them. Tax returns, bank statements, property deeds and statements from retirement accounts may be among them. It will also be necessary to make a new budget. This could include paying or receiving child support and alimony. Housing costs may change since a person might be moving into a new home. A person who is insured through a spouse may need to seek new health insurance. The budget should also include legal costs. This is a good time for careful spending because of the additional costs associated with the change. Furthermore, people who are expecting child or spousal support cannot always be entirely sure of when that support will start arriving.

After the divorce, it will be necessary to take a look at retirement and estate planning. People may need to revise their retirement plans. Wills and other estate planning documents may need to be changed as well. This includes beneficiary designations, which are often overlooked after a divorce.

Couples who are going through a divorce have a choice between trying to reach an agreement outside of court, usually with the help of their attorneys, or by turning to litigation. The advantages of making an agreement outside of court include lower costs, less stress and more control over the final agreement. However, this doesn't work for everyone. If a spouse is uncooperative or a parent is concerned about a child's safety with the other parent, litigation may be the only option.

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