Divorce settlements come in all manner of shapes and sizes, and the best ones are customized to what each spouse and their children need. While Illinois law and previous case results can be a guide, you and your spouse have a great deal of discretion in how to divide your assets and plan for the future. Whether you want to go through mediation, negotiate your divorce settlement directly with your spouse, or head to court and litigate the issues, you have the right to an attorney. You should work with an experienced Naperville divorce attorney to ensure your rights are always protected and you understand your options. For more information on negotiating a divorce settlement, call Fay, Farrow & Associates at 630-961-0060 to schedule a consultation.
Divorce Settlement Considerations
If you want to maintain control over your divorce settlement, keep these 7 factors in mind:
- An honest budget: When you are trying to decide on the division of the marital estate, spousal support, and child support, you have to have an honest look at your finances. Sit down with a financial professional, such as an accountant or financial planner, and determine a realistic budget for now and down the road. Without this tool, you may not realize you agreed to too little property or alimony.
- An equitable division: When you are attempting to divide your property, it can be easy to focus on splitting assets and debts evenly. However, a perfect 50/50 division may not be equitable, depending on your situation. Seek an equitable division of the estate. The current and future value of assets needs to be taken into consideration as well as what is fair to you and your children.
- Valuations: When it comes to valuable assets such as businesses, stocks, real estate, vehicles, art, and jewelry, do not assume you know how much each piece or parcel is worth. In some circumstances, you and your spouse should seek objective third-party valuations to ensure you are able to divide the marital estate equitably.
- Modifications: Your divorce settlement determines a number of things you or your ex may want to change in the future, particularly spousal maintenance. Your agreement should include when and how variable elements can be modified.
- The future: Many divorcing individuals make the mistake of focusing on the here and now during a divorce. However, the financial ramifications of your divorce will continue for years down the road. Keep in mind your future finances, inflation, and retirement. You must fully consider alimony, child support, college expenses for your kids, and obtaining your fair share of retirement savings.
- Life insurance: If you expect to receive child support and/or alimony for a significant period of time, then you should require your ex-spouse to have a life insurance policy to secure the payment of support, in the event of your ex’s death.
- Taxes: You do not want to finalize your divorce this year only to be hit with a large tax bill you were unprepared for next April. As you and your spouse negotiate a fair division of your estate, always keep the likely tax liability in mind.
Work With a Naperville Divorce Attorney
There are a number of benefits to negotiating a divorce settlement with your spouse, including maintaining control and amicability. However, the advantages of negotiations can be lost without an experienced and knowledgeable guide. By working with a Naperville divorce attorney from Fay, Farrow & Associates, you gain a negotiation partner who understands the law, will strive to protect your rights, and can provide you with unique ideas for an equitable settlement.
Call Fay, Farrow & Associates today at 630-961-0060 to schedule a free consultation.