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Joint bank accounts and divorce: What should you do?

On Behalf of | Nov 21, 2019 | Property Division

During your marriage, there’s a good chance you opened at least one (and probably more) joint bank account with your spouse. While there’s nothing wrong with this, it can cause some confusion if you decide to divorce.

Here are a few key steps to take if you have joint bank accounts and are moving through the divorce process:

  • Open your own account: Before you do anything with your joint bank accounts, open an individual account where you can house your income and pay your separate expenses.
  • Keep an eye on your bank account: While you may understand the importance of not using joint bank account funds during divorce, your soon-to-be-ex could see this as an opportunity to make frivolous purchases.
  • Talk it out: If you want to get this off your plate before your divorce begins, talk to your spouse about options for managing joint bank accounts. For example, you may decide to split the money in half and permanently close the accounts.

Along with the above, make note of the date in which you decided to divorce. After this date, neither of you should use joint bank accounts for individual purchases.

Joint bank accounts are often among the most valuable assets in a divorce case. Planning in advance can help you manage these accounts in a way that benefits both of you.

Issues with property and debt division can hold up the divorce process, so make sure you have a clear understanding of what’s happening and the steps you can take to protect your interests before you make another move.