Many New York fiancé(e)s want to ban negative thoughts during the joyous, stressful months leading up to a wedding. You can’t blame couples for wanting to enter marriage on a positive note. Legal experts caution that stalling in fairy–tale mode can set up dangerous financial hazards in the event of a divorce.

Even as they purchase rings and plan reception details, most fiancé(e)s know that divorce is the outcome for 40 percent of U.S. marriages. People would never marry at all if they lacked confidence in marriage. Unfortunately, relationship certainty sometimes turns to doubt and divorce after marriage. Matrimonial attorneys encourage spouses to plan for the worst even when the worst never comes.

Finances are frequent sore points with divorcing spouses. Experts say up to 70 percent of married couples settle into a routine where one spouse is the money handler. The partner who avoids the chore of finances is often the one who gets hurt during a divorce settlement. Post–marital reality is harsh for spouses who are under–informed about the other’s budget, income, investments, savings and debts.

The best way to avoid getting blindsided by finances during divorce is to stay current with money matters from the start of a marriage. So, what can less—than—financially–savvy spouses do if they are already considering or unexpectedly forced into divorce?

Line up professional help. A financial consultant can work alongside a divorce attorney to make sure a spouse’s economic interests are protected. The right advisers help spouses avoid irrevocable mistakes during settlement and prepare a budget for a one–income financial life.

Divorcing spouses can take action by gathering and safekeeping vital personal and financial records. Updates must be made to shared accounts, insurances, wills and retirement plans. The best possible credit score must be preserved to prepare for future borrowing.

Financial change is unavoidable following divorce. Attorneys and money managers make certain ex–spouses can live with the decision affordably.

Source:, “DeMarrais: Divorce can take financial toll” Kevin DeMarrais, Apr. 21, 2013