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Getting a divorce can be one of the most challenging times that anyone will experience. The process can take an emotional toll, but the paperwork, dividing property and other complexities can also have a profound effect on your future financial well-being.

While there are many factors to consider, one way to take some control is to be as prepared as possible before the process begins. Being organized can help reduce stress and allow you to achieve more favorable results.

Details to gather when contemplating divorce

If you have decided to get a divorce, or are considering it as a possibility, take three steps to protect your financial future:

Inventory all assets: Make a checklist of everything you and your spouse own and have the documents to prove those assets exist. Some of the information you’ll need includes:

  • Bank and investment accounts
  • List of all marital and non-marital property
  • Insurance policies
  • Wills or trusts
  • Retirement funds
  • Real estate deeds
  • Loan and mortgage documents
  • Credit card statements
  • Personal financial statements and balance sheets

Organize your documents: Devise a system so your documents are easily accessible for yourself, your attorney and any other advisors you may have. For example, keep homeownership records together, such as the deed to your house, closing documents and mortgage paperwork. This will help provide an accurate value for your home to help you receive your fair share.

Classify your assets: Once you have located all of the property belonging to you and your spouse, and have the documentation to back it up, separate each asset as marital or non-marital. New York is an equitable division state, meaning a judge will determine a fair division of assets, which may or may not be a 50/50 split.

Take control by being prepared

There are many moving parts during a divorce, and the time you spend getting prepared in understanding your financial situation can be well worth the effort. Consulting an experienced family law attorney in New York can help you relieve the anxiety caused by the process and lead to a reasonable outcome.