CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING DURING DIVORCE

Does one size fit all? While this concept is most commonly applied to clothing (these items rarely fit properly), it also used in divorce settlements. Regardless if the settlement is in Nashville, Brentwood, TN or your city and state. Your family is unique and so are your needs. Yes, attorneys tell me a 50 / 50 division of assets is common in Tennessee. However, how the 50 % is achieved does not mean that every asset is divided evenly. Perhaps one spouse needs more cash. Perhaps one spouse wants to keep the frequent flyer miles, the house or a specific … Continue reading

ADJUSTING TO LIFE FINANCIALLY AFTER DIVORCE

Going through a divorce can be an emotionally difficult time. Ironing out a divorce settlement, attending various hearings, and dealing with attorneys can weigh heavy on all individuals involved. In addition to the emotional impact, individuals and families are left trying to assess how their financial position will be impacted. It is vitally important as you walk through the divorce process that you make sure your finances are on track. It is equally important to begin cultivating a relationship with a financial advisor who can assist in identifying any gaps in your financial position as a result of your circumstances … Continue reading

WHAT IS A QDRO?

A QDRO (Qualified Domestic Relations Order) is a legal document necessary when dividing a qualified retirement plan such as a 401(K) or 403(b). It is not required when dividing an IRA. A QDRO is typically prepared by the divorce attorney and costs about $1,200. If you are dividing retirement funds, you may want to consider minimizing legal fees by dividing an IRA rather than the 401(K). Here’s an example: If you have a 401(K) with $50,000 and and IRA with $100,000 your total retirement funds are $150,000. If the assets will be divided 50/50 then each spouse should receive $75,000. … Continue reading

UNDERSTANDING STOCK OPTIONS

If in the midst of divorce and your marital estate includes stock options, it is important to understand the details. Stock options cannot typically be transferred to the other spouse. For example, if your spouse receives the stock options from their employer, they are assigned to that person and cannot be transferred to you. Your spouse will have to exercise the options, pay the taxes and the net proceeds can be transferred to you. This transfer will not have tax consequences if the transfer occurs within 12 months from the date of divorce. Regardless if you live in Nashville, Brentwood, … Continue reading

DON’T FORGET THE FINANCIAL DETAILS

A divorce client mentioned she was considering allowing her husband to have three years to pay her the money he owed her from her share of their business. Giving him three years would reduce the considerable financial pressure on her soon to be ex-husband and his business. I told her I thought this was quite beneficial for her husband and reminded him she was entitled to the potential interest she could have earned on those funds had she received them at the time of divorce. If she did not ask for the interest, she would be walking away from $27,000. … Continue reading

DIVORCE DEBT

A divorce client walked into my Nashville this week asking me to help them address paying off their debt. This is a common problem that unfortunately too many of us face. Credit card debt is by far the biggest problem. For example, if you have $5,000 in debt on a credit card, your interest rate is 15% and your minimum payment is $100, it will take you 23 years and 9 months to pay off the debt. You will pay $6,869 in interest. During divorce, money is often tight and it makes sense to use a credit card to get … Continue reading

GET A FINANCIALLY SMART DIVORCE AND SECURE YOUR FUTURE

People get divorced everyday. Getting a financially smart divorce… not so much. Clients need to think about not only what they need today but, tomorrow. Inflation makes dollars worth less in the future. You should not accept an offer without considering inflation, the fact that as kids grow, their clothes get more expensive and the HVAC unit you’ll need to replace next year. Yes, divorce is a miserable experience and most people just want to get it over with and stop the pain… However, you’ll live with the effects of the settlement for the rest of your life. Take the … Continue reading

WHY SEPARATE CREDIT CARDS?

If you are divorcing in Nashville, TN and beyond, you need to understand if you are the primary card holder or just the authorized user for any credit cards you are currently using. You can obtain this information by calling the credit card company directly (their phone number is on the back of the credit card) or from your credit report. You can obtain a free credit report once a year by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com. Why is this information important? Because if you and your ex-spouse remain as authorizer users for the credit card, you will be liable for any charges … Continue reading

AVOID DIVORCE INSURANCE MISTAKES

Warning: Will Your Insurance Protection Survive Your Separation and Divorce? Divorce is traumatic enough without the financial complications of an uncovered insurance loss. Attorneys and judges are quick to consider life and health insurance in divorce cases. But frequently other forms of personal insurance do not get much attention. During a divorce judges frequently tell the parties in a divorce not to make any changes to their insurance policies. What the judges are trying to do is stop malicious tampering with insurance policies by the warring spouses. However, legal professionals sometimes overlook common but crucial property and casualty insurance issues. … Continue reading

Minimize Unnecessary Expenses During Divorce

Regardless of how much divorcing spouses may dislike each other, they often equally dislike spending money on a divorce battle and draining their hard earned savings and retirement funds on unnecessary legal fees. Consistently, I strive to avoid letting uncertainty whip my Nashville, TN clients into an emotional tizzy. The more frenzied their emotions, the longer the proceedings and the more costly the divorce. Frequently, it is the emotions in divorce that cloud people’s thinking and result in tens of thousands of dollars spent unnecessarily. As a divorce financial planner and mediator, I am aware of the emotional issues my … Continue reading