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Getting new financial professionals during divorce

Part of making a clean break with a spouse in a divorce may involve working with different financial professionals. This could be particularly daunting for the person who was the dependent spouse, but these professionals should help the person prepare for life after divorce. An attorney might be one source of recommendations.

First, a divorcing spouse might want a new financial adviser. The financial adviser can help them plan financially for after the divorce, looking at questions such as whether the person can afford to keep the house in the divorce. A financial adviser may also help a person stay on track for retirement and ensure that all necessary changes are made to end financial ties with the ex-spouse.

An accountant can help a person understand the more complex elements of dividing property during a divorce. For example, a certain amount of money in cash is not the same in stock because the stock may have taxes and other potential costs. An accountant may also be helpful in finding any assets the other spouse might try to hide. Finally, once the divorce is final, the person might hire an estate attorney to create a new will and new powers of attorney. These financial professionals may continue to assist the person after the divorce.

A dependent or lower-earning spouse might get alimony on a temporary or permanent basis. Before going into divorce negotiations about division of assets, the person might want to discuss financial goals with an attorney and what should be prioritized. For example, if it is going to be difficult for a lower-earning spouse to build substantial retirement savings, the person may want to make sure to get a fair share of the retirement account. Considerations may also be different depending on the person's age and whether there are dependent children.

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