There's no doubt that the property division process can shape your post-divorce life. Depending on the outcome of the process, you can be left feeling like you got a fair shake out of your marriage dissolution or you end up feeling cheated. There are many things you can do to better ensure that you achieve an equitable distribution of marital assets, though, which we'll touch on briefly here.
To start, it is often beneficial to develop a post-divorce budget. Many people find it tough to transition from a two-income household to a single income household, especially because many expenses, such as utilities, won't be split. Also, many newly divorced people find that they have immediate needs, such as a new vehicle or a security deposit or down payment on a home, which can quickly eat into any savings. By starting with this budget, an individual can better assess where he or she needs to be after the property division process is completed.
Another step is to carefully consider which assets are most beneficial to you during property division. Although many New Jersey residents find themselves sentimentally attached to a family home, this asset is not as easy to liquidate and often requires the spouse who is keeping the house to buy out the other. This reality, in conjunction with maintenance costs, can quickly leave a newly divorced individual on unsteady financial footing. By taking other liquid assets, though, an individual may be able to secure the financial stability he or she needs to start a new chapter of life.
Other steps need to be taken, too. An individual needs to think about marital debts and how those will be handled, as well as how child support and alimony may play into divorce proceedings. By being holistic in your preparation, you can establish a strategy for property division negotiations that hopefully leaves you exactly where you need to be post-divorce. Surprises during marriage dissolution are uncomfortable, to say the least. Don't be surprised when dealing with your financial situation during divorce. Instead, consider working with a divorce attorney who can help you realize your vision for the future.