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Divorce can bring unexpected financial burdens

Divorce is seldom easy. Perhaps you knew this already, and you hope to take every possible step to simplify and streamline the process. You may prefer the gentler form of mediation to avoid the heavy conflict of a litigated divorce. Whatever method you and your spouse choose to end your marriage, your goal is to move on with your new life with as little stress as possible.

Even if your divorce is civil and amicable, you should still prepare for changes in your post-divorce life. Most divorced individuals do experience some financial struggle in the months and years following a divorce as they adjust to their new reality. It may help you to learn all you can about the common financial setbacks some people deal with when newly single.

Some financial hits you may not expect

Obviously, your income may be much smaller. Without your spouse's contribution, you may find yourself having to be especially careful with your money, cutting back on luxuries and budgeting your priorities. You will still have a household to maintain, and you may even have to replace some items your spouse obtains through property division, such as furniture and dishes. Other factors to consider as you create your new money plan include the following:

  • You may wish to consult a tax specialist about how your new status will affect your returns for the coming year and how you can prepare for this change.
  • Certain items may be more expensive for an individual than for a married couple, such as phone plans and insurance.
  • You may have to start over funding your retirement accounts after dividing them with your spouse.
  • If you and your spouse had joint credit, you may have to rebuild your individual credit.
  • If you are on the hook for child or spousal support, you can plan for those payments to take a considerable percentage of your income for the near future.

In fact, it is possible that your situation could change at some point, such as if your spouse remarries or acquires a substantial windfall, or if you should experience a financial setback. You may wish to lower your support amounts in such cases. To do this, you will need to return to court to request a modification. Ideally, however, your Oregon attorney can help you obtain an order or settlement that is satisfying and appropriate to allow you a smooth transition into your new life.

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