Missouri residents who are getting a divorce should take care to avoid certain mistakes during the process. These mistakes can result in very costly consequences in the future.
Having certain records on hand is necessary to make informed decisions about certain divorce issues. Once divorce seems inevitable, it is important that individuals begin to obtain records that detail the balances and account numbers for all financial accounts. It is also necessary to have on hand Social Security documents that report a spouse’s earning records and expected benefit payout for the future. Records that show the amounts that have been paid for highly valuable assets and for major home improvements should also be gathered. Having all of these documents on hand can help with both deciding on divorce settlement terms and planning for taxes and retirement.
Not taking into account the tax implications of one’s decisions during a divorce can also be an expensive mistake. There are certain assets, such as retirement accounts, investments and property, that will have a current, certain face value, but that value is very likely to change in the future due to how they are treated tax-wise. For example, if a Roth IRA and a traditional IRA have the same balance, divorcing individuals should treat the Roth IRA as being more valuable because its withdrawals will not be assessed taxes during retirement. For stocks and other types of investments, it is important to realize that their values may take a substantial hit when taxes are assessed.
A family law attorney may work to protect the rights and interests of clients seeking a divorce. Depending on the circumstances of the divorce, the attorney may negotiate to obtain the desired divorce settlement terms. Litigation may also be used to resolve disputes regarding property division, spousal support and child custody.