No-one goes into a committed relationship expecting it to end. But as they say, love is blind. Unfortunately, and sadly, sometimes they’re right.
Money musts if you split up
- When your emotions are going through the upheaval of a relationship break-up, it can be hard to think clearly or be sure you’re doing the right thing.
- It’s important that you understand how to best manage your finances in this difficult time.
Separating your finances
- Breaking up is hard to do – and it can also be hard on your finances.
- Take out the guess-work. Download our must-have divorce and separation financial checklist to get your money on track and set yourself up for the future.
Banking – go your own way
- If you have a joint bank account – arrange to split the funds and close it. Same goes for any joint credit cards or loans.
- It’s essential that you open a bank account in your name only, ASAP.
- Don’t take your chances – even the most mutual and reasonable relationship break ups can turn ugly, fast. Change your PIN and passwords.
- Arrange for all of your income to be paid into your new account, including any pay you receive for work and any Centrelink benefits you receive.
Counting your cash
Moving on out
- If you’re living together you’ll obviously need to decide who stays and who goes.
- If you’re renting, get your lease updated. Neither of you want to remain responsible for the other’s ongoing rent payments. Remember to sort out your half of the bond money too.
- Update your account holder details with providers including your energy, pay TV, phone and internet.
- If you’re the one who’s staying put, consider getting a flatmate to help you cover the bills.
- If you have difficulties meeting your bill repayments now that you’re on your own, talk to your providers. Let them know you are experiencing financial hardship and negotiate a repayment plan.
- You need to be separated for a year before you can apply for a divorce. Be sure to note your separation date and any supporting evidence, such as your updated lease.
- You can save some big cash on legal fees by managing your own divorce.
- Check out this handy DIY divorce kit from the Family Court of Australia.
If you do need legal help, you don’t have to go hiring a fancy, expensive lawyer.
Buyer beware – of STDs!