Some of the problems that commonly arise relating to finances upon separation include:
- Hiding of assets
- Bank accounts being drained
- Selling off property
- Bills not being paid (eg mortgages, loans, credit cards)
- Lack of access to financial resources; or
- Lack of knowledge about current financial position
When it comes time to finalize how you are going to divide your assets (referred to as a financial or property settlement), it is what is remaining that is shared. So, if money is moved, spent or wasted, what is left over is what can be divided in that settlement. There is no opportunity to claw back any value from anything that has been syphoned, spent or wasted.
Unlike applying for a divorce, you do not need to wait to get the property settlement process under way. Often it takes considerable time to collate the required information, coupled with the risk of your collective assets reducing with time, so getting the process under way sooner rather than later, is ideal. In fact, many people tell us they wish they had started earlier!
Even if you and your ex are amicable, issues like these can and do arise and create no end of short-term and long-term consequences. Because you’re probably already going through significant stress, you don’t need issues like these heaped on top!