Paying For Your Ocean or Monmouth County Divorce
There are many questions that can arise when contemplating a divorce. Child custody, child support, equitable distribution of assets and alimony are but a few. However, one of the most common factors that keep people in unhappy marriages is the belief that they simply can’t afford to enter into the divorce process. The truth is that there are many avenues that can be taken to pay for a divorce. A critical look into your finances may reveal that divorce may be the best economic path in the long run.
The Bronzino Law Firm LLC, has represented clients in divorces in communities across New Jersey including Asbury Park, Neptune, Wall, Manasquan, Point Pleasant, Brick, Jackson, Sea Girt, and across Monmouth and Ocean Counties. We understand that divorce is complicated. We provide effective and personalized legal solutions, at aggressive rates, with a client-centered approach.
Paying for Your Ocean County Divorce
Paying for a divorce is not as complicated as it may seem on its surface. There are many sources of income that can be used to gain your independence through the divorce process.
- Savings. Funds in a joint account or a separate account can be used to pay counsel fees. It is important to remember that any funds you use will still be subject to equitable distribution in the divorce. It is common for both spouses to use savings to pay for their counsel fees. Commonly spouses agree to split the accounts and each party can use their share for their own counsel fees.
- Credit Cards. Depending on how much credit you have available credit cards are a convenient way to finance your divorce. Though not the most desirable way due to interest charges, the entire cost of many divorces is paid for using credit cards. The reasoning is that if you are going to get a share of assets, such as equity from the house or other investments that you can liquidate at the resolution of the divorce, you will be able to pay off the credit cards later.
- Home equity loan or line of credit. It is common for homeowners to have an open line of credit or funds from a home equity loan. However you must remember that any funds you use against the home will be considered later in the overall context of equitable distribution. If the house is in your spouse’s name it is possible to make an application to the court obligating your spouse to open a line of credit for your legal costs.
- Investments. Investment accounts such as mutual funds, brokerage accounts, stock or bonds, can be liquidated, or partially liquidated, to get cash. It is normal these types of accounts to also have a cash component so you may already have cash available. If these accounts are in your spouse’s name, you can receive a court order obligating your spouse to liquidate the account to distribute to both of you to use for counsel fees.
- Retirement Accounts. A 401(k), IRA, Roth IRA, or similar account, can be liquidated for cash. However there are taxes and usually substantial penalties that may apply. It is advisable to consult your accountant or financial adviser if you are concerned about penalties.
- Pension. Although you cannot cash out a pension like you can a 401(k) or IRA, often times you can take a loan against it. There are restrictions on how much you can borrow and how you pay it back. Your financial adviser is usually able to provide you with the information about how this can be done.
- Whole Life Insurance. A whole life insurance policy, may have equity that you can cash out or borrow against.
- Personal Loan. You can apply for a loan at a bank or borrow funds from a friend or family member.
- Divorce loans. There are many loan options available through banks and some of which are specifically provided for divorce litigation.
Financial Benefits of Divorce in Monmouth County
When contemplating the overall cost of divorce it is important to look not just the what you will be paying but what benefits you will be granted. These include but are not limited to:
- Easier budgeting and greater control over money. Fights over money and financial priorities are one of the most common factors leading up to divorce.
- Early access to a retirement fund, penalty-free. A divorce is one of the very few times a person can take money out of a retirement account early and not pay an early withdrawal penalty.
- More college financial aid for the kids. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid only requires financial information from the custodial parent rather than both parents. This may translate to greater awards of financial aid.
- Social Security perks for older divorcees. Divorced spouses may be eligible to file for Social Security spousal benefits at retirement if you were married to your spouse for at least 10 years.
- Opportunity to reset financial priorities. Finance experts say the opportunity to rethink priorities and start fresh can be a positive.
Contact our Experienced Toms River Divorce Attorneys Today
The divorce attorneys of the Bronzino Law Firm, LLC have extensive experience guiding and representing clients through all kinds of divorce and family law matters in towns including Toms River, Brick, Ocean, Point Pleasant, Red Bank, and across both Monmouth and Ocean Counties. Since opening our doors our firm has believed in aggressively and zealously representing our clients and using every possible legal tool to help them realize the best post-divorce life possible.