Preparing Financially for an Illinois Divorce

Posted on in DuPage County Divorce Attorneys

DuPage County divorce lawyerIf you have decided to end your marriage, there are important steps you should take in order to protect your financial interests. Even if you think that your divorce will be a friendly one, the reality is that all it takes is one disagreement over what may seem a minor issue and your divorce can quickly turn into a remake of the old movie The War of the Roses, in which a divorcing couple’s possessions become the focus of a contemptuous divorce battle.

Dividing the Marital Estate

Illinois is an equitable distribution state, which means that all of the assets and property the couple owns will be divided between them in an equitable manner. In order to make sure this division is equitable, it is important to have an accurate accounting of how much the marital estate is actually worth.

Unfortunately, this can sometimes result in one spouse trying to hide assets. This can be especially easy to do if one spouse leaves the handling of all of the couple’s finances up to the other spouse.

Regardless of whether you have traditionally been responsible for managing your family’s finances, the following are some of the key documents that you should obtain before you actually file for divorce or if you suspect your spouse is getting ready to file:

  • The last four pay stubs for you and your spouse

  • Copies of current statements for all bank, stock, and brokerage accounts

  • Tax returns for the past five years, including all W-2s, 1099s, and any other documents filed with your taxes

  • The most current earnings statement sent out by the Social Security Administration each year, which shows each spouse’s earning history

  • Copies of statements for any pensions, including documents from plan administrators that provide pension details and benefits

  • Copies of statements for any 401(k)s, IRAs, or any other retirement accounts

  • Copies of any health insurance policies in which you and your spouse are enrolled

  • Copies of both spouse’s employee benefit manuals that detail all benefits provided to employees

  • Deeds to any real estate you and your spouse own

  • Titles to any vehicles you and your spouse own

  • Inventory and video/photographs of furniture, appliances, household items, artwork, collections, jewelry, and any other items you and your spouse own

  • Inventory and video/photographs of any safe deposit box contents

  • Inventory and video/photographs of any safes you and your spouse have

  • Copies of current statements for any bank accounts, saving bonds, or other financial accounts you and your spouse manage for your children

  • Copies of current mortgage/credit line statements

  • Copies of current credit card statements

  • Copies of statements for any other debt you and spouse have

Contact a DuPage County Divorce Lawyer

If you are thinking about a divorce or your spouse has already had you served with divorce papers, do not delay in calling Andrew Cores Family Law Group at 630-871-1002 to schedule a free consultation with one of our dedicated Wheaton, IL divorce attorneys.


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