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A financial planner may help during divorce

People in Berks County who are facing the end of their marriage may benefit from working with a financial planner. Often, people wait until after a divorce, but this can mean making mistakes in the settlement that have long-term financial consequences. Estranged couples should avoid sharing the same adviser, however.

A financial adviser might be able to steer a client away from making a poor decision regarding property. For example, one woman was happy when she got the house in a divorce settlement. She was unaware, however, that her husband had borrowed against the equity and did not disclose this to her.

Even a house that has not had a loan taken out on it may cost more than a person anticipates. One scenario might be that a person who has been a stay-at-home parent gets custody of the children and keeps the home as well while the liquid assets go to the other spouse. The problem is that the person with the home may not have anticipated costs such as maintenance and insurance while the one who gets the liquid assets may see them appreciate far more quickly and with dividends rather than expenses. Difficulties may also arise if one spouse tries to hide assets. A financial adviser might be better equipped to ferret this out.

Once people have a better understanding of their financial situation and various future scenarios that could arise from different divorce settlements, they may want to discuss their goals and potential strategies for property division with their respective family law attorneys. A couple may be able to come to a more satisfactory arrangement if they can negotiate rather than going to court.

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