A few years ago, I was in a pretty serious car accident. During the aftermath, I became really familiar with a lot of different types of lawyers. I worked with personal injury lawyers, insurance lawyers, and many others. Perhaps the most important, though, was the estate planning lawyer. I was really young, and neither my wife or I had thought about starting a will. But the accident kind of scared us into it. What would happen if one of us were to die? Even when still in the hospital, I was working with the lawyer to draw up a will. Now, I have some peace and security about what the future will be like if something should happen to me. And I have a lot of experience working with various types of lawyers! The accident was kind of a blessing in disguise in that way.
One of the biggest concerns for many people who decide to divorce as a result of financial problems is preserving their credit rating. When financial problems already abound, credit can be a very real concern. If you've found yourself in this position and concerned about the effect the divorce might have on your credit rating, you'll want to be proactive about protecting your score. Here's a look at a few tips that can help you keep your credit intact while you separate your finances.
Start With the Basics
If you've never been the one to manage your credit accounts, you may not have a lot of understanding of the proper way to manage your credit score. Start by getting a good idea of where you stand. To do this, request a copy of your credit report from each of the three credit bureaus. You can request one free report from each bureau every year by requesting it on the bureau's website or by calling them directly.
Review each report for accuracy based on the records that you have. If you have any joint accounts with your spouse, make sure that the information is correct. If you see any discrepancies, use the correction request procedure offered by the bureau to have it adjusted.
Clean Up Your Accounts
Close out any joint accounts that you hold with your spouse. This is important because it keeps you from facing any disasters due to overextended spending. This also allows you to completely separate your accounts from those of your spouse. The sooner you close the accounts, the easier it will be to protect your credit from any potential irresponsible decisions on the part of your spouse.
Open Your Own Credit Accounts
Once you close your joint accounts, you'll want to secure your own credit. Do this shortly after the separation so that you don't have to worry about decisions on the part of your spouse affecting your eligibility for a new credit account. You should also open your own bank accounts, including checking and savings. If you need a retirement or investment account, make sure you do this right away, too.
Although it requires a bit of effort and attention on your part, it is possible to separate your credit from that of your spouse during your separation. The sooner you do these things, the easier it will be to protect your credit. Talk with a divorce attorney today to see what other things you may need to consider.Share
26 November 2015