Cover image for Divorce & money : make the best financial decisions during divorce
Title:
Divorce & money : make the best financial decisions during divorce
ISBN:
9781413326987
Edition:
13th ed.
Physical Description:
522 pages ; 23 cm.
Contents:
Introduction: Your financial companion during divorce -- Legal vs. financial realities of divorce -- Financial realities no one talks about -- Emotional divorce : managing the "money crazies" -- The hardest part : is my marriage really over? -- The separation : what happens when one spouse moves out? -- Closing the books : what do we do with joint property? -- Getting help : whom can I turn to? -- Financial fact-finding : what must I know and when must I know it? -- Facing the future : what must I plan for? -- Protecting against risks to life, health, and property -- Taxes : how do I file and pay? -- Property and expenses : who owns and who owes what? -- What will happen to the house? -- Retirement benefits : who gets what? -- Financial investments : how do we divide the portfolio pie? -- Evaluating employee benefits and stock options -- How will we divide debts? -- Child support or alimony : what might I pay or receive? -- Negotiating and finalizing the best possible settlement -- After the divorce : how do I get from "we" to "me"?
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Summary:
All the information you need to split your assets, easily and fairly. Major financial decisions are often overwhelming, but they can feel downright impossible when you're in the midst of a divorce. Turn to Divorce & Money, the acclaimed guide that translates complex financial concepts into plain language to help you: create a cash flow statement using your income and expenses, uncover your spouse's financial information, determine the value of real estate, retirement accounts, and other assets, understand how child support and alimony are calculated, divide your property and debts fairly, negotiate a comprehensive settlement, achieve financial stability after divorce, and learn when and how to talk to a professional (attorney, tax adviser, or appraiser).
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Summary

Summary

All the information you need to split your assets, easily and fairly

Major financial decisions are often overwhelming, but they can feel downright impossible when you're in the midst of a divorce. Turn to Divorce & Money , the acclaimed guide that translates complex financial concepts into plain language to help you:

create a cash flow statement using your income and expenses uncover your spouse's financial information determine the value of real estate, retirement accounts, and other assets understand how child support and alimony are calculated divide your property and debts fairly negotiate a comprehensive settlement achieve financial stability after divorce, and learn when and how to talk to a professional (attorney, tax adviser, or appraiser).

The 13th edition is updated with the latest tax figures and information about the new law affecting alimony.


Author Notes

Lina Guillen is a Nolo editor and trial attorney, with over 15 years of experience in family law and civil litigation. Lina has written numerous articles on the financial aspects of divorce and has been quoted in several publications, including U.S. News, Real Simple Magazine, and How Stuff Works.


Table of Contents

Introduction: Your Financial Companion During Divorcep. 1
If You Are Feeling Overwhelmedp. 4
Managing Your Divorce in Troubled Financial Timesp. 5
How to Use This Bookp. 9
A Note on Same-Sex Marriage and This Bookp. 10
1 Legal vs. Financial Realities of Divorcep. 13
Lessons in Legal Realityp. 15
Your Best Strategy: Think Financially-Act Legallyp. 22
Legal vs. Financial Stages of Divorcep. 23
2 Financial Realities No One Talks Aboutp. 27
In Divorce, Everything Takes Longer and Costs Morep. 30
You're at Risk When You're Financially Connected to Another Personp. 31
The IRS Is Watching Your Divorcep. 32
Cash is Kingp. 33
You're Playing for Keepsp. 35
3 Emotional Divorce: Managing the "Money Crazies"p. 37
Reduce Stress Whenever You Canp. 41
Safeguard Your Sanityp. 42
Watch Out for Sore Spotsp. 44
Be Prepared for the Worstp. 44
Develop a Financially Focused Mental Attitudep. 46
Avoid the "All at Once" Syndromep. 46
Manage the Ebb and Flow of Emotionsp. 47
Don't Let Financial Tasks Overwhelm Youp. 49
4 The Hardest Part: Is My Marriage Really Over?p. 51
5 The Separation: What Happens When One Spouse Moves Out?p. 55
The Separation Datep. 57
Building a Better Credit Report and Credit Scorep. 65
Social Security Benefits After Divorcep. 68
Questions to Ask an Attorneyp. 69
6 Closing the Books: What Do We Do With Joint Property?p. 71
Joint Account Checklistp. 72
Questions to Ask an Attorneyp. 83
7 Getting Help: Whom Can I Turn To?p. 85
Questions to Consider When Seeking Outside Helpp. 86
Selecting Professionals to Assist Youp. 88
8 Financial Fact-Finding: What Must I Know and When Must I Know It?p. 111
Advice to the Terminally Disorganizedp. 113
If You Think Your Spouse May Be Hiding Assetsp. 116
Don't Forget the "Easy-to-Forget" Assetsp. 118
The W-2 and the Tax Returnp. 122
What About the Gifts You Gave Me?p. 127
Financial Facts Checklistp. 128
Questions to Ask an Attorneyp. 128
9 Facing the Future: What Must I Plan For?p. 133
Major Upcoming Life Eventsp. 134
Anticipated Financial Commitmentsp. 135
Major Goals That Will Cost Moneyp. 136
Where Does the Money Come From?p. 139
10 Protecting Against Risks to Life, Health, and Propertyp. 143
Insurancep. 144
Property and Estate Protectionp. 150
Questions to Ask an Attorneyp. 152
11 Taxes: How Do I File and Pay?p. 155
Get a Rough Estimate of Your Tax Billp. 156
Which Status Is Better to Use When Filing Tax Returns?p. 158
When in Doubt, File Separatelyp. 158
What to Know if You File jointlyp. 163
Dividing the Joint Tax Liability-Or the Refundp. 166
Tax Issues Involving Temporary Alimony or Child Supportp. 169
Get Your Tax Agreement in Writingp. 170
Questions to Ask a Tax Adviserp. 170
12 Property and Expenses: Who Owns and Who Owes What?p. 171
Who Owns What-Marital Property and the Laws of Your Statep. 172
Who Knows What-Using Legal Discoveryp. 175
Net Worth-What Do You Own and What Do You Owe?p. 177
The Difference Between Assets and Incomep. 189
Cash Flow-Where Does the Money Go?p. 191
Questions to Ask an Attorneyp. 193
3 What Will Happen to the House?p. 205
Financial vs. Legal Realitiesp. 207
The House-Keep It, Transfer It, or Sell It? Now or Later?p. 208
Steps Toward Settling the Housep. 208
Questions to Ask an Attorney or Financial Adviserp. 243
4 Retirement Benefits: Who Gets What?p. 245
Understanding Retirement Plansp. 248
Qualified Domestic Relations Ordersp. 257
The Legal Value of Your Retirement Plansp. 259
The Financial Value of Your Retirement Plansp. 264
Calculating the Financial Value of Plansp. 269
Additional Financial Factors Affecting Retirement Plan Divisionsp. 275
The Division Decision: Now or in the Futurep. 279
Questions to Ask an Attorneyp. 282
15 Financial Investments: How Do We Divide the Portfolio Pie?p. 287
Concepts to Considerp. 289
Steps to a Settlementp. 298
16 Evaluating Employee Benefits and Stock Optionsp. 335
Employee Benefitsp. 336
Stock Options and Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Plansp. 341
Questions to Ask an Attorney or a Tax Specialistp. 351
17 How Will We Divide Debts?p. 353
General Rules on Who's Responsible for Debtp. 354
If You Live in a Community Property Statep. 356
Listing Your Debtsp. 357
Marital Debts and Bankruptcyp. 357
Dividing Debts at Divorcep. 368
Dividing Debts When There's Nothing to Fight Overp. 369
Questions to Ask a Divorce Attorneyp. 370
Questions to Ask a Bankruptcy Attorneyp. 370
18 Child Support and Alimony: What Might I Pay or Receive?p. 373
Child Support-Legal, Financial, and Emotional Realitiesp. 375
Steps to a Settlementp. 380
Alimony-Legal, Financial, and Emotional Realitiesp. 401
Steps to a Settlementp. 403
Questions to Ask an Attorneyp. 418
19 Negotiating and Finalizing the Best Possible Settlementp. 419
Have You Done Your Financial Homework?p. 421
Tallying Your Marital Balance Sheetp. 421
How Are the Offers and Counteroffers Made?p. 426
How Do You Finalize the Settlement?p. 429
Divorce Ceremoniesp. 431
20 After the Divorce: How Do I Get From "We" to "Me"?p. 433
How Do I Finish the Business of Divorce?p. 434
Can I-Or My Ex-Spouse-Change the Settlement?p. 439
What Do I Want to Do With My Life?p. 441
If You Find a New Love, Protect Your Old Assets ... and Your Alimonyp. 449
How Can I Move Beyond the Divorce?p. 453
Appendixp. 457
Law Librariesp. 458
Lawyers and Typing Servicesp. 460
Online Legal Resourcesp. 463
Additional Resourcesp. 463
Present Value Factorsp. 467
Future Value Factorsp. 473
List of Professional Advisersp. 479
Indexp. 483