Your soon-to-be ex has moved out of the house. The divorce is in the works. You’re untied from each other.
Except you’re not.
Until you sign those divorce papers, you will remain linked in a number of ways, especially when it comes to finances and parenting.
For one, don’t plan on taking a trip with the kids, especially from New York to another state or overseas, without getting the permission of your co-parent. In fact, in New York, an immediate restriction is placed on travel with minors once a divorce petition has been served. That is for the protection of both parents as well as their children.
You can’t transfer or get rid of property, and you can’t take commingled funds or run up the joint credit cards. You also can’t remove your spouse from the accounts. A judge will notice spending that’s out of the ordinary, and you might be ordered to reimburse your spouse for your overspending. So it’s wise to stick to the necessities — like food, clothing, shelter, child care costs, gas — until your divorce is settled.
You also can’t sell an asset that you believe is not marital property without the court ruling, or your spouse giving their approval.
If your family is covered by health insurance of which you are the subscriber — such as your company-sponsored plan — you can’t remove your spouse from the insurance to save money while the divorce is pending. You also can’t take them off of the car insurance or life insurance policy.
You want this divorce to run smoothly, and bumps in the road can pop up. Before planning any trips with the kids or withdrawing any money for the mortgage payment, talk to your attorney. They can advise you if your plans are in violation of restrictions or can work with your spouse’s attorney to try to resolve the situation.