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Prepare for divorce by protecting your finances

Many Chicago-are residents are familiar with the divorce process. It often takes a lot of time and preparation to make sure a divorce settlement is fair for both parties. The more you can do to prepare -- and the sooner you can do it -- will benefit you greatly, especially when it comes to your finances.

One of the first things you should do is start saving up money. It will cost you money to get divorced, and after you are divorced you will likely be living on less many than before, so starting to build up funds that are in your own name can go a long way to help you land on your feet. That brings us to the next point: Open accounts in your own name.

Depending on how you and your spouse chose to handle money, you might already have your own bank account and credit card, but if you don't, it is important to do that during divorce. Creating a separate account will protect all the money you save up from being divided in divorce. While you are at it, make sure to close any accouts you and your ex shared. 

Finally, get your hands on every financial record and document that details you and your ex's financial situation. Make copies of everything and keep them somewhere safe. 

Divorce is rarely and easy process. With the right knowledge and preparation, however, individuals going through divorce in Chicago and the rest of Illinois can set themselves up for success. 

Source: USA Today, "Protect your finances while divorcing a bully," Elizabeth MacBride, June 23, 2013