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Considering divorce during financial planning conversations

When married couples in Colorado and around the country choose to divorce, one spouse is often far better prepared than the other to deal with the pressures of the process. This is sometimes caused by clandestine preparations made by one spouse while their husband or wife is completely unaware that their marriage has a problem, and in other situations it is the result of spouses not taking an active role in financial matters and being left unprepared for the important decisions that a divorce demands of them.

Couples who accept the possibility of divorce and wish to take proactive steps walk a fine line. Making financial decisions based partly on a worst case scenario can breathe new life into long dormant resentments and create conflict where there was none, but plans made without taking the realities of the world into account can leave some spouses at a terrible disadvantage. This is particularly true when marital assets are tied up in complex investments or business arrangements.

Couples with separate 401(k) accounts sometimes decide to invest heavily in the account that offers the best returns or lowest fees. While this may make a great deal of financial sense should the marriage endure, it can cause bitter disputes during divorce negotiations. Most experts agree that couples should speak openly about their financial affairs and use these conversations to uncover misunderstandings and strengthen their relationships.

Experienced family law attorneys may have encountered spouses who have been left at a disadvantage after being kept in the dark about financial matters. When dealing with this type of situation, attorneys may call upon investment experts or forensic accountants to ensure that assets have not been concealed. Attorneys could also suggest that their clients consult with a reputable financial planner once their divorce has been finalized to help them prepare for the road ahead.

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Cooper, Tanis & Armas, P.C.
42 Garden Center
Broomfield, CO 80020