Things to Consider in a Divorce Agreement – Part II | Legal Articles


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Things to Consider in a Divorce Agreement – Part II

This is the second part of our “preparing for divorce checklist” series which looks at all the financial considerations when getting divorced in South Africa.

It’s no secret that the divorce process can be very costly, but there are many other areas of your personal and financial life that will need some attention if you want to be prepared for the financial blows that may come your way during and after your divorce is finalised.

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Preparing for Divorce Checklist

Open Your Own Bank Accounts and Put All Other Accounts in Your Name

Opening a bank account in your own name will help you ensure that you can transact confidentially and independently from your soon to be ex-spouse.

This is especially important if you share a joint account with your spouse. Be prepared to go through the process of setting up all your debit and stop orders as well as your online banking profile.

However, this is a good opportunity to look for more affordable banking solutions that are better suited to your personal requirements.

Additionally, move all other relevant accounts, such as your cell phone contact, into your own name if it isn’t already. This will avoid complications from your spouse freezing any account that you are still using.

Separate Your Short-Term Insurance

One you have settled into your new living arrangements, it’s important to separate your short-term insurance and adjust the value of the household contents, remove any assets from the policy that belong to the other spouse and change the contact details on the policy by adding the new address.

Avoid Buying Expensive Gifts out of Guilt

It’s natural for newly divorced parents to experience immense feelings of guilt. However, buying your children expensive gifts to make up for the circumstances will create further unnecessary financial stress.

Instead, consider saving money for their tertiary education or opening a savings account in their name that they can access at a later stage.

If Possible, Opt for Uncontested Divorce

Uncontested divorce is by far the easiest and most affordable method of divorce and there is typically less emotional stress that comes with this method.

An uncontested divorce means that both spouses work together with the same attorney and agree to the divorce terms, maintenance, division of assets and child care plan.

Based on these agreements, the attorney drafts a settlement agreement and has it made a court order. An uncontested divorce can be finalised within a few weeks and legal bills are kept to a minimum.

Make Use of a Mediator

Mediators are trained to be impartial and can play a key role in helping you and your spouse to reach common grounds. This is another way to avoid the exorbitant costs of a contested divorce.

Professional mediators have the ability to assist couples in finding a resolution and moving forward swiftly. A mediated divorce can be finalised within just a few months but requires both parties to remain committed to the process from the beginning to the end.

Van Deventer & Van Deventer Incorporated – Divorce Attorneys South Africa

Our divorce attorneys provide legal assistance with mediated, contested and uncontested divorce in South Africa.

It is our priority to ensure the best possible outcome for all our clients. For more information, or to speak to one of our divorce attorneys, please contact us.

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