Essential Ways to Prepare for Divorce as a Young Adult

Strategies for Managing Debt and Other Challenges During Divorce in Your Early Twenties in Point Pleasant, Eatontown, Belmar, Little Silver, and Surrounding Communities.

How to Manage Divorce in Your Early Twenties in Monmouth County, NJDivorce for twenty-somethings is uniquely challenging because of the tough financial questions young couples face. At any age, separating personal and community property is a serious matter that can affect individuals for years, if not a lifetime. Aside from the emotional turmoil of divorce, young couples with long-term plans and budding careers and families typically face daunting debt. Student loans, car payments, rent, and credit cards mean steep monthly payments. How do young couples just starting out begin to handle debt and other issues when one household becomes two? Here are some helpful strategies and recommendations.

Preparing Your Finances Before Divorce in Your 20’s

When contemplating divorce, consider getting your house in order first. That means paying down debt, among other steps, to stabilize your finances before you separate your household. According to Business Insider, the average American debt for Gen Z, covering ages 18 to 26, is nearly $30,000.00 per person in 2024. It’s even higher for Millennials, the previous generation. Most of a couple’s combined debt is shared debt accumulated during the marriage, which means each party is responsible for the debt. So, everything from car payments to credit card purchases for furniture, computers, and gaming consoles become joint responsibility.

So, before filing for divorce, think about becoming financially stable. There are many options to make that happen. For one, itemize all monthly, quarterly, or annual payments and plan to make extra payments when possible. So, if you have monthly mortgage payments, double up payments when you can and pay more than the minimum credit card payments to pay down principal debt.

Consolidate Credit Card Debt

If you have a credit card offer to transfer your high-interest balance to a zero-interest card for a certain period, take advantage of the offer and savings by paying off a good chunk of the debt before the interest rate kicks in. You may be able to consolidate various credit cards into one card or consolidate all debt into one payment by taking out a loan with a more favorable interest rate to save on interest.

Prioritize Large Debts for Quicker Results

Also, pay down your largest debt first, whether a credit card or other payment. You can save money and time by first paying off or down the largest debts to lower interest. Then, you can use what you save to pay down the principal to repay the total debt quickly. It may take a while, but the benefits pan out in the long run.

Adjust Your Budget for Extra Payments

You may have to reign in your spending and stick to a tight budget to afford extra payments. Map out your expenses and eliminate all but the necessities for a time, scheduling extra money for emergency expenses only. Check your monthly automatic payments and eliminate what you no longer need to pay, like monthly subscriptions you can do without or rarely use.

Implement Downsizing Strategies

Downsizing is another strategy to contain your spending and cut down on expenses. That may mean selling a home with a high mortgage to buy a smaller place, like a condo or townhouse, or renting a place for less. It may also mean decluttering your home for the move and selling items you may no longer need. Your sports car with high monthly payments may have to go, too, for an economical vehicle that eliminates monthly payments or lowers them. You might also save on gas.

Knowing the Pitfalls of Social Media in Divorce Proceedings

In addition to financial stability and preparation, be sure to protect yourself from social media posts and online communication that can come back to bite you in court. You may spend lots of time on Instagram or Facebook sharing your life in good times and bad, but going through a divorce is different. You need to think about what you post about your life.

A divorce is an adversarial process, even among couples agreeing to resolve most issues. You may post something on social media that becomes evidence to discredit you later. A simple post about having a drink with friends that may have been a fun share about your life before can turn into a weapon in a custody battle. Avoid social media, logging off altogether. You can come back after your divorce.

Setting the Stage for Your Next Chapter with a Prenup

Preparing for divorce is a time to readjust and plan for the immediate and long-term future. You must think about how to get through the divorce and live a new life post-divorce. Young folks in their twenties are more likely to think about the possibility of divorce and protecting their assets and themselves before getting married. According to an Axios article, “America embraces prenups: 50% of adults open to signing,” 41% of those belonging to Gen Z and 47% of Millennials entered prenuptial agreements before marriage.

Prenups allow young couples contemplating marriage to have frank discussions about money, debts, and assets. A formal written agreement spelling out which assets and debts remain separate even after marriage can save couples some grief in a divorce. It also empowers each to take control of their futures and not leave their financial security to the courts to split assets and debts.

Don’t Go Through Divorce Alone

How to Plan when Divorcing in Your 20's in Southern New JerseyOne of the most helpful ways to plan for a divorce is to consult a family law attorney. With our experience handling numerous divorces over the years, we can warn you about the challenges that often arise, like debt allocation and custody battles. In the preparation stage, Bronzino Law Firm’s family lawyers can be invaluable in helping you plan for your divorce by explaining the role of debt in a divorce, the problems that arise, and the resources to help you manage debt before filing for divorce.

Our legal team can also educate you on court procedures and the evidence necessary to prove specific facts to obtain child custody, child support, alimony, and your separate property by court order. We can advise you about the dangers of social media and warnings about avoiding pitfalls in your case by careless interactions on Instagram, including bashing your spouse and revealing too many details about the divorce proceedings.

Most importantly, our attorneys can represent you throughout the divorce proceeding, from the initial filing to the final decree, standing by your side at court hearings and settlement discussions. You need all the support you can get from family and friends during a divorce, but also from a talented divorce lawyer who can assure you about what to expect and advise you on what to do.

Seek the Counsel of a Family Lawyer to Handle Divorce in Your Early 20s in Toms River & Freehold, NJ

Contact Bronzino Law Firm to speak with a family law attorney to help you prepare for your divorce as a twenty-something in Sea Bright, Manalapan, Beach Haven, Freehold, Toms River, Red Bank, Howell, and towns in Ocean and Monmouth County. Feel free to reach out to us today at (732) 812-3102 or simply provide a brief description of your case online to arrange your complimentary and confidential consultation.