I’ve finished my divorce. Now what?

By September 2, 2015Divorce

Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal, P.C. posted in Divorce on Wednesday, September 2, 2015.

By Alisse Camazine

  1. If you are on your spouse’s health insurance policy, look into receiving COBRA (continuation coverage) information if you are going to remain on the insurance. Your spouse’s employer needs to provide this information to you within 30 days.
  2. Make certain that all of the property is divided. This includes signing and filing deeds to real estate, transferring retirement accounts, and dividing securities accounts and bank accounts.
  3. Prepare a new will, trust, and power of attorney for healthcare decisions.
  4. Change beneficiaries on life insurance, retirement plans, and any other accounts that have beneficiary designations.
  5. If you changed your name in the divorce, make sure you change your name with the social security office. This will require a certified copy of your divorce decree. Also consider whether you need to change your name on your driver’s license, your passport, and your W-4 form with your employer, as well as on your account records and any other “official” records that have your married name on them.
  6. Terminate or switch to your name alone (as provided in your divorce judgment) all lines of credit, credit cards, and bank accounts that were jointly titled.
  7. Change utilities, car insurance, and homeowner’s insurance into your own name.
  8. Open a personal property tax account with the county department of revenue
  9. Change passwords to all financial accounts and social media accounts. If you have a security system, make sure that you change your codes and passwords to those your ex-spouse can’t guess.
  10. Keep track of all child support and maintenance payments whether you are receiving or paying support. It is best to document the check number and the date checks are mailed. If you receive the child support, document that each check is deposited (keeping copies of the canceled checks is best).
  11. Meet with your accountant to determine whether there are any tax issues as a result of the divorce. If you receive or pay maintenance (alimony), this will affect your taxes. If you can now claim a child as an exemption or no longer can claim a child, this will also affect your taxes. In most cases, it’s a good idea to change the withholding on your paycheck because you will likely be paying taxes at a different rate than when you were married.
  12. Keep track of all problems related to child custody in writing and on a calendar.
  13. Contact the schools your children attend as well as their health care providers and give them updated information, including any change of address and emergency contact. Make sure that both parents are included on all information from the school and on all emails from the school unless your divorce judgment specifically states otherwise.

If you have any questions about your rights and obligations following divorce, contact one of the experienced family law attorneys at Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal.

Disclaimer

Alisse C. Camazine

Alisse C. Camazine

In her almost 40 years of practice, Alisse Camazine has become one of the leading family law practitioners in the St. Louis area, focusing on child custody and complex divorce and property litigation. She has been listed in Best Lawyers for Family Law since 1993, and has been named St. Louis Lawyer of the Year for family law.