When a couple is considering divorce, one option that they may choose to exercise is a trial separation. This can allow them to decide if they are better off ending their marriage or reuniting and giving the relationship another try. While separation can help a couple determine the state of their marriage, there are some potential financial pitfalls associated with a separation.
To help ensure that a person is protected financially during a separation, it’s a good idea to split up finances as well as living arrangements. Each individual should obtain their own bank account and credit cards, and joint accounts should be closed. Additionally, if one person normally handles a couple’s finances, each person should start managing their own. If a couple ends up getting divorced, each individual will need to be responsible for their own money management, so it’s a good idea for someone who’s not familiar with handling their finances to start during a separation.
It’s also a good idea to have a separation agreement drawn up. A separation agreement can outline how liability for debts accrued during the separation will be handled. It can also outline how child and spousal support will be dealt with and the types of access that each individual will have to marital assets.
It’s important to consider the financial implications of a divorce if a person thinks it may be possible. Even if a couple stays together, there’s no harm in making plans and getting information about a couple’s assets. The outcome of the asset division process can have long-term effects on a person’s ability to make ends meet, and people need to go after assets that will provide them with the most benefit. A lawyer could explain how assets are divided and what is and is not considered marital property.