Ways to Protect Your Assets in a Divorce

By Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange-County-divorce-mediators; California Divorce MediatorsYou would be well aware of the fact that once you separate from your spouse and start a new life from scratch, you will need substantial financial support to pay your bills and maintain your regular standard of living. It is, therefore advisable, to organize your finances and assets in such a way that your spouse cannot obtain an undue ownership of what is rightfully yours. By devising a solid plan before you go on to file a divorce, you can legally protect your assets and rest assured that you will not be left with an empty bank account when the final verdict is announced. Here are a few ways in which you can protect your property and assets in the event of a divorce or a legal separation.

Organize your separate property

It is important to create an inventory checklist of all the items that have been given to you separately, to ensure that they do not get mixed up with your marital or community property. It may include any specific possessions such as jewelry or family heirlooms that have been directly inherited by you. You can also take photographs of the items on your separate property list, to prevent your spouse from claiming them on the grounds of obscurity. After preparing the catalog of your valuables, you can move them to a safe place so that you do not miss out on them in case you have to leave your marital home. 

Gather proof of gifted or inherited possessions

It is a good idea to go up to the concerned people and request a written and signed proof to state that the items were solely given to you and not your spouse. The court of law demands evidential proof of every little thing that is brought forth to a trial. It will be easier and more convenient for you to prove your ownership of a separate property in front of a judge if you possess an attested statement to support your claim.

Sort out your rent and mortgage payments

The lending companies and landlords expect you to pay the monthly installments, regardless of what your present situation might be. If the situation arises you may have to move out of your marital residence before or after filing for a divorce. Although, you will still be obliged to make one-half of the mortgage or rent payments, this action of yours can be detrimental to your claim in the share of your home. It is therefore advised to have a peaceful and practical discussion with your spouse and reach a mutual agreement about who will be entitled to become the rightful owner of your marital home post-divorce.

If you are thinking of getting a divorce from your spouse, you should organize your finances right away, even before you file a petition in the court and proceed with divorce mediation.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation