When Illinois couples go through divorce, a major concern on the minds of both parties is what their financial situations will be after the separation is finalized. Keeping tabs on assets, debts and the general state of one’s finances will not only help limit surprises after a divorce, but also make the process of dividing marital property go much more smoothly. To reduce costs in the long run and the short run, divorcing couples in Rockford should carefully evaluate the health of their finances.

While a house is normally the largest of many couple’s assets, other important assets may come into play during the settlement, even if those items were never jointly owned. These other assets might include retirement accounts, pensions and stock options. These matters can figure largely in determining awards for spousal maintenance.

Taking a hard look at one’s debt is also important during a marital split. If possible, it’s a good idea to pay off debt before filing for divorce. Otherwise, it can be difficult to remove one person from a debt unless it is paid in full. After all, most people don’t enjoy being in debt over something — such as a car — that they don’t own or use any longer.

Also, knowing exactly how much you spend on a monthly basis can be beneficial both during and after the divorce. It is common for people to underestimate their actual expenditures, so taking a close look at how much money is being spent on an individual level, as well as jointly with the other spouse, can help Illinois residents have a clearer picture of a truly equitable divorce settlement.

Source: Fox Business, “Five Things to Know About Your Finances Before a Divorce,” Cindy Vanegas, May 4, 2012