Financial Advice for Divorcing Men
What’s a man to do? You’ve decided to divorce and now you are finding that there are multitudes of services that cater to helping women during divorce. Granted, we still live in a society where the more-likely scenario is that the husband has handled the finances during the marriage and the wife needs a little more hand holding. But this is not always the case and men can struggle to find the resources they need.
Even if you have handled your family finances for the entire marriage, you still need to be sure you understand your financial options as well as your legal ones. With the help of the right financial expert, you’ll find there are many helpful tax laws that can make a creative and amicable settlement very appealing. The following are some common mistakes to avoid that, in my experience, has saved lots of money for my clients!
Thinking that the assets are all yours because she didn’t work.
Chief Operations Officer is a very difficult job. If you have been married for a long time and your wife was primarily a wife and mother during the marriage, you have a COO. And I promise you, she worked just as hard, if not harder, than you did. What you have together, you built as a team and you each deserve your fair share. Even if you begged your wife to get an outside job for years and years and years and she just refused. Get over it, it is what it is.
Refusing to give up retirement assets.
A lot of times, men get emotionally attached to pensions and retirement plans and will negotiate a settlement that lets them keep those assets. I understand, it is a reward you’ve earned for a lifetime of hard work. But remember, both pensions and retirement assets are taxable income when you receive them. If you are earning significantly more money than your spouse for most of your life, chances are you will always be in a higher tax bracket than her. Take advantage of this fact and give her the ENTIRE settlement in retirement assets adjusted for HER tax rate instead of yours. This strategy has saved couples that I work with tens of thousands of dollars in taxes and they get to share in the benefit.
Being a bully.
Our society has come a long way on how we regard bullying. Even with that knowledge, fear can show up in the negotiation process as anger and I see lots of men that make the mistake of thinking that being angry will somehow help the situation. Gentlemen, it’s just a bad, bad idea. You’re both scared. Make sure that you work with a CDFA® practitioner, or Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® practitioner that will incorporate future financial planning into your settlement negotiations and everyone’s fears can be addressed fairly.
Not asking for help.
The last tip I have for you is to realize that you don’t know what you don’t know. Men are often motivated by saving money and will attempt to have a do-it-yourself divorce where they draw up their own paperwork. Bad, bad, bad idea. There are so many intricacies, both financial and legal, to the divorce process that you will save thousands of dollars by making sure that you cover all the bases. At the very least, consult a professional to be sure your decree is enforceable.
At Smarter Divorce Solutions, we want to help EVERYONE in the divorce process to have a kinder, gentler, much more affordable process. Let us help you.
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