Divorce and Money | Forgotten Assets
by Vanessa Soto Nellis
So you’re getting divorced and you’re worried you might be missing something financially. Maybe you’re just worried you’ll forget something substantial – something that you don’t normally think about every day.
It is important to be careful. And to help you remember some of the more important items, we’ve created this Divorce Planning Checklist to get you thinking about the more commonly forgotten assets.
This way, you’ll be more prepared when you next meet with your divorce lawyer. And if you are more prepared and organized, you’ll save your attorney’s time, which will save you both time and money too.
Most Forgotten Assets When Planning for Divorce
We’ve broken this into four basic categories of overlooked possessions and potential income, because it may be hard to forget that you own a yacht, but it may be difficult to recall that there’s 18 months’ worth of dock space left on the lease. Remember, if it’s “out of sight,” it may be especially “out of mind” during a stressful divorce.
Some of these items, especially in the Earnings or Investments categories, may be critical for couples undergoing a Grey Divorce.
Earnings – Everyone remembers the regular paycheck, but don’t forget about the other items listed here.
- Unused Bonuses
- Unpaid Commissions
- Medical Benefits
- Delayed Earnings
- Rental Property Income
Investments – Where did you put your money 10 years ago?
- Options to Purchase Stocks or Property
- Patents, Copyrights or Royalties
- Savings Bonds or Securities
- Unused Property for future retirement or business
- Prepaid Car Insurance
- Life Insurance Benefits
- Forgotten Credit Union or Bank Accounts
- Custodial Accounts set up for children
Entertainment – Relaxation and fun cost money. But did you prepay for some entertainment or invest in a hobby?
- Travel Miles or Points
- Timeshare Property
- Club or Spa Memberships
- Collections, i.e. Art, Toys, Comic Books, Classic Cars
- Docking or Hangar Leases
- Season Tickets, i.e. Sporting Events, Theaters, etc.
Miscellaneous – For many couples, every dime will count if they’re not used to running two, separate households. Don’t forget these:
- Moving Costs: Do you need to hire movers?
- Security Deposits for the apartment, setting up utilities, etc.
- Leased Vehicle: Who will keep it, make payments, and/or benefit from payments already made?
- Income Tax Refunds, Carry-Forward Credits, Prepaid Taxes
- Business Vehicles for personal use
Remember: It is important to retain your records (credit card statements, bank statements and tax returns) to thoroughly complete your disclosure forms during a divorce. Mistakes made at that stage of the dissolution process can of course, be costly.
Vanessa Soto Nellis is an Encino Divorce Attorney with nearly a decade’s experience in divorce and divorce mediation. Contact her via email: email@example.com.