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Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.

Houston exes suffer from poor financial choices during divorce

Many Houston spouses think the most stressful parts of a marital break-up are wide-swinging emotions and conflicts with exes over unresolved issues. Some Texas spouses also experience another unpleasant side of divorce that doesn’t show up until after the decree. Some ex-spouses learn too late they made a bad financial deal.

Once a marriage is over, spouses move into independent lives and solitary budgets. The property division issues are behind you, but the decisions of the past can affect finances far into the future. Courts spend a lot of time making sure children in divorces receive financial benefits, but adults are largely on their own to work out a fair split of marital property.

It is difficult if not impossible to change a property distribution agreement after a divorce is finalized. Ironclad proof a divorce settlement was invalid is required to reopen a case. That’s why attorneys stress paying close attention to the long-range impact of property agreements.

Many spouses, especially those in high asset divorces, retain additional advisers to count and value marital assets and liabilities. Professionals can recommend a financial plan for the immediate future but sometimes -- more importantly -- also can see down the road. Property division can be complicated by shifting asset values, hidden property, interstate and international laws and unrecognized tax burdens – not easy for a person to navigate alone.

Many attorneys are well-versed in the division of pensions, stock portfolios and far-flung real estate. Others will suggest hiring financial counselors and work with those advisers to safeguard property interests. Ultimately, it’s up to a spouse to come to his or her own conclusions, but the added knowledge while making property choices can be invaluable.

Many spouses make the mistake of turning over property arrangements entirely to attorneys. Get involved and take advantage of knowledge that counselors offer. A divorce lawyer doesn’t have to live with your financial future – you do.

Source: Source:, "The 7 Biggest Money Mistakes That Divorcing Women Make," Lili A. Vasileff, July 9, 2014

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