Divorce & Finances Blogs & Articles

Posts

Finance and Divorce | Johnsen Wikander P.C. West Michigan Divorce Attorneys

Finance and Divorce

Divorce can be unexpected, catching either spouse off guard and unprepared for the issues to come. In many relationships one spouse may handle the couples finances, taxes, and other administrative responsibilities, leaving the other spouse completely unprepared to assume those responsibilities after their relationship has ended.

Although the couple’s marital assets and debts may be equally distributed through alimony (spousal support) and child support, a newly divorced spouse may not have the experience to assume control over their own bills, taxes and insurance.

1. If you are facing divorce, it’s important to consult with an experienced divorce lawyer as soon as possible to avoid some of the more common financial problems such as the following:

2. Banking – Checking and savings accounts should be created as soon as legally allowable. Consult with your attorney before removing either spouse from a joint account to avoid legal issues later.

3. Insurance – One spouse will probably take over their own car, renters, homeowners, or health insurance. It’s important to consult with your insurance agent before proceeding with any changes in coverage.

4. Credit Cards –It may be necessary for one spouse to apply for a card in their own name. The other spouse may need to remove additional users from their account and create a new one.

If the card must be used for expenses while the divorce is pending, it may be best to remove the second user from a joint credit card. It’s important to stay protected from any credit card debt incurred by your spouse while a divorce is pending.

5. Financial Management – Find a good accountant and advisor who can counsel you on unfamiliar issues such as taxes and investments.

6. Taxes – If one spouse has been primarily responsible for filing joint taxes, find an accountant who can help navigate important tax issues. It’s better to pay a professional than to risk mistakes and potential penalties.

Aside from the challenges of alimony (spousal support), child support, and the division of assets. There are many other financial implications that must be addressed. If you’re facing divorce, please contact the experienced West Michigan attorneys at Johnsen Wikander and let us help you through your most difficult time.

Collaborative Divorce & Finances

Divorce, Wealth, and the Future of Amazon.com

The divorce of the world’s wealthiest couple turned Jeff Bezos’ wife MacKenzie into the 3rd richest woman in the world.

Mrs. Bezos could have been the richest as she was entitled to 50 percent of the couple’s holding in Amazon, as well as Bezos’ other private space company, Blue Origin, and his recent acquisition, the Washington Post.

As of today, Amazon stock alone is valued at more than $1800.00 per share, putting the Bezos’ holdings of more than 80 million shares at a value of over $140 billion dollars.

However, MacKenzie Bezos agreed to give control of 75% of the couple’s shares to her husband, along with the voting rights to the 25% of the stock that she will retain. While Jeff Bezos’ net worth will remain above $100 billion dollars, MacKenzie will leave the marriage with more than $35 billion of her own.

The couple’s divorce created concern in the financial world since an extended or contentious split had the potential to influence Amazon’s stock price. If the couple went through a difficult divorce, control over the company’s future may have shifted, negatively impacting Amazon stock.

However, according to separate Twitter posts from both Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos, the couple parted ways on amicable terms. They stated that they intend on working closely on philanthropic projects and will cooperatively co-parent their four children. Both of their statements referenced the other as a “friend.”

With so many celebrity divorces ending badly and so much riding on the outcome, it is interesting to note the positive statements by both spouses and the apparent cooperative nature of their split.

Did MacKenzie and Jeff Bezos work things out on their own, or could they have used a process such as Collaborative Divorce to come to a final agreement?

Collaborative Divorce provides couples with a process that reduces animosity and offers a more respectful, less combative approach to the dissolution of their marriage. Couples choosing Collaborative Divorce engage a group of professionally trained Collaborative specialists who help the couple work together to reach a mutually acceptable resolution.

The Collaborative Divorce process helps couples maintain their co-parenting relationship and helps to keep their children’s well-being in the spotlight. By removing conflict, the ability for spouses to work together and co-parent their children is very often maintained.

Whether you are facing divorce in Silicon Valley or Grand Rapids, please consult with a qualified divorce lawyer before taking any steps forward. In West Michigan, contact the experienced West Michigan divorce attorneys at Johnsen Wikander today and let us help you through your most difficult time.