To avoid traumatic post separation time, here are few important things you need to do:
- Firstly, you need to close all your joint accounts – Talk to your bank to establish your own account with your own pool of money, and make sure the other joint account holder can’t access it. Check that your pay is going into this account
- Record your turning points – Note down the dates of your separation in a diary. You can use this when you apply for a divorce as proof that you have been separated for at least 12 months.
- Check your financial situation – List all your assets, and any debts or joint debts in your name.
- Cancel yours redraw facilities – Talk to your bank to cancel any redraw facility on your home loan to make sure your debts don’t grow.
- Update your utility bills – If your name is on the account you are liable for any unpaid bill.
- Seek legal advice – Speak to a solicitor about separating property held in joint names, taking legal action, if property is held in your partner’s name, to prevent it being sold before the property settlement, and to update your will.
This is the time to make completely new budgeting. Besides that, you need to collect all your important documents in one place.
You need to find and organise your:
- Savings and transaction account statements
- Utility bills
- Credit Cards and Store Cards
- All bank documents – mortgages for your own home as well as for other properties that you may have
- Tax records
- Insurance policies
- Superannuation accounts (for you and your ex-husband)
- Will and estate plans
- Contact details of your accountant. Fin. Planner and legal representative
Do not forget that there is free legal advice for you to help you and support you to plan, handle your assets, make a decision about your children, housing and how to manage your debts. These services are usually provided by the government but beside that speak with other people who had a similar experience.
Do not be afraid! You are starting a new life. There is a saying:” When one door is closes, another opens”.