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Thursday, August 15, 2013

5 Quick Tips to Divorce Finances Through A Divorce

Do you (or someone you know) know someone who is going through a divorce that needs a few financial preservation tips?  I do!

Even though I have never had the unfortunate experience of a divorce, I have helped several of my clients through the financial transition from joint to individual finances.  When couples go through a divorce, they are not only divorcing each other; they are also divorcing their finances as well.  Financial Divorce can be just as, if not more, emotionally draining and frustrating.  Depending on how amicable the separation is, may determine the ease or complexity of the separation of finances.

Regardless of where a person is in the separation, here are 5 quick tips about How to Divorce Finances through a Divorce.
Get Organized!
Gather as many financial documents as possible. Financial statements and documents will be requested and may be required during the separation process.  Here is a Divorce Financial Checklist of documents that may need to be gathered. Consult with a divorce attorney for all of the documents that will be asked for and required to remit to the court.
Separate Bank Accounts
Make sure to open separate individual savings and checking accounts.  Don’t just open an account in desperation … rather; make sure to open up an account at a financial institution that is conducive to the financial needs and usage. Open an account with great customer service because they may be needed for assistance through the financial transition.  Avoid accounts or financial institutions with excessive fees.
Update Direct Deposit
Don’t forget to update direct deposit or payroll deductions through the employer from the joint account to the new individual bank account(s) established.  If the joint account is responsible for paying bills that may affect the credit reports, continue to make deposits just enough to pay those bills OR stop the bill payment or payroll deduction from that joint account and set it up in the individual account to maintain a positive credit history.
Do a “Clean Break” with Loans
Having joint debt is like having a child together.  Regardless of the status of the relationship, both borrowers are equally responsible to pay the debt until it is paid in full despite what the judge or divorce decree says.  So, first things first … get copies of all three credit reports from Equifax, Experian, and Trans Union from  The best way to preserve credit history during a divorce is to do a “Clean Break.” Identify all credit accounts, and then try to negotiate who will take on what debt. Once that is agreed upon, each should try to get an individual loan to pay of the joint loan.  If either person does not qualify for an individual loan to do a “Clean Break,” try to agree that the other person will make timely payments on the joint loan. This is important because if the one person pays late or not at all, it will negatively affect the other person’s credit and ability to obtain the credit that may be needed after the divorce.  This is especially critical with credit cards.  Make sure to block the credit card lost/stolen and request a new card number to avoid future usage from the other part.
Update Beneficiaries
Don’t forget to update all financial documents! Update the beneficiary on your retirement savings account, insurance policies, bank accounts, etc.  Also, don’t forget to update the W-4 once the separation is final. During the divorce, many people forget to update this important information.
The best way to get through this tough situation is to try to think of the financial side as a business matter.  However, if the separation is not amicable, it may be best to have the divorce attorneys to discuss and negotiate these and other matters.

It is also a good idea to work with a financial professional or counselor for guidance during the financial divorce. Best wishes and contact us for further assistance.
Making Money Matters Manageable,

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Top 10 Things You Need to Know about Healthcare Reform

Are you (or someone you know) worried about how the upcoming Healthcare Reform will affect you?  I am!
Many people, especially entrepreneurs and those are that currently uninsured, are concerned about the upcoming Healthcare Reform. So to simplify the new requirements, Sherri Kindlmann of Inshpere Insurance Solutions gives 10 quick Tips about what you need to know about Healthcare Reform.
Tip 1:  Children may remain on their parent’s insurance policy up to age 26.
Tip 2:  2014 health plans cannot impose pre-existing condition exclusions.  
Tip 3:  Annual limits on essential health benefits are prohibited.
Tip 4:  Premiums cannot be based on health status, claims experience, or gender.
Tip 5:  Insurers must accept everyone who applies for coverage during the 2014 ACA enrollment period.
Tip 6:  All private health insurance plans offered in the Marketplace will offer the same set of essential health benefits which include  emergency services, maternity and newborn care, mental health; prescription drugs, laboratory services, preventive and wellness services, Rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices, and pediatric services.
Tip 7:  Individuals must have health insurance coverage in 2014 or may have to pay a penalty.
Tip 8:  Private health insurance can be purchased on state-based insurance exchanges administered by a governmental agency or non-profit organization.
Tip 9:  Open enrollment begins on the Health Insurance Marketplace in October 2013 for coverage beginning January 1, 2014.  The initial open enrollment period ends in March 2014.
Tip 10:  Middle-income people under age 65, who are not eligible for coverage through their employer, Medicaid, or Medicare, can apply for tax credit subsidies available through state-based exchanges. 
For more information about the Healthcare Reform, contact your local insurance agent or go to


Contributing author, Sherri Kindlmann, is a licensed insurance agent in the state of Georgia, representing Insphere Insurance Solutions.  For questions and complimentary health insurance consultation, contact Sherri at or 678-226-9266. IIS001391