Kline Legal Group P.L.C.

Unpleasant financial shocks can accompany divorce

When people in Michigan decide to divorce, the financial aspects of the end of a marriage can carry with them some unpleasant surprises. In one recent survey, around 46 percent of divorced women said that they encountered major surprises about family finances during the divorce process. The survey included 1,785 women who were either divorced or in the divorce process, one-fifth of whom were age 55 or older. The respondents noted some common themes as the source of financial shocks during divorce.

Among these common responses included learning about the true size of marital debt, especially when all items like credit card debt, student loans, home mortgages, lines of credit and car loans were included. Many people were truly unaware of how much debt they were in and had to divide until the divorce process began. Interestingly, younger women were more likely than older women to be surprised about marital finances during the divorce. Despite beliefs that older women tend to leave financial matters to their husbands, they were more likely than millennial women to have a full view of their finances.

Some of the respondents who were stay-at-home mothers or homemakers were shocked by the financial realities of returning to the workplace. Spousal support often ended earlier than they expected, and they may have faced a difficult time obtaining the salaries they desired to maintain their lifestyles. Others noted the surprisingly large cost of purchasing health insurance as a single person.

The financial disentanglement that comes with divorce can be one of the most challenging parts of the relationship's end. This is especially true for wealthy couples going through a high-asset divorce with investment funds, multiple properties and complex accounts at stake. A family law attorney may provide representation that protects a client's assets and works to achieve a just settlement.

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