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Discussing finances before marriage

Financial issues that a spouse brings into a marriage can be a significant contributing factor in ending a marriage. Any Pennsylvania resident who is considering getting married should understand the importance of discussing financial matters before marrying his or her spouse.

According to recent statistics on divorce, around 45 to 50 percent of first-time marriages end in divorce. The possibility that a divorce will occur increases with each following marriage. Data also shows that individuals in their early 20s are more likely to divorce their spouse. In order to have a marriage that is not plagued with financial conflict, potential spouses should speak openly about their current financial situation and their financial plans for the future.

Short-term and long-term budgeting management plans should be discussed before a marriage. Both parties can create a monthly budget that can help them save for the future. Prenuptial matters are also critical topics of discussion to have. Both individuals should decide what would happen to their personal property, such as retirement accounts or inherited assets, in the event of a divorce.

Each party's past and current credit and debt situations are also important issues to be addressed. This includes credit ratings, student loan amounts, money owed for credit cards and whether either person has ever filed for bankruptcy. The pros and cons of sharing finances, such as bank accounts and mortgage, should be considered, as well as what type of estate plan should be used.

Financial issues can be the primary reason married couples decide to separate. During a divorce, finances can also be highly contested issue, especially in a high-net-worth divorce. A divorce attorney may negotiate favorable settlement terms for his or her client.

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