Our Services

Sullivan Taylor & Gumina, P.C.
1250 E. Diehl Road
Suite 400
Naperville, IL 60563
Phone: 630.665.7676
Fax: 630.665.8630
Google Map of the office

What are important things to do when you know you are getting divorced?

  1. Knowledge is power.  Get copies of whatever financial records you can get your hands on. Don't destroy or remove records permanently, just copy everything you can find. Bank statements, brokerage firm statements, last three years of tax returns, recent pay stubs, current statement for the mortgage, car loans, and current bills. Copies of any life insurance policies (especially the declarations pages -- these show the value of the policy and the effective dates).  Record account numbers from all bank and brokerage accounts, as well as loan account numbers for all long-term and short-term debt.
  2. Construct your financial defenses.  Close joint credit card accounts. You don't need your spouse running up the joint card. Time to close it out (at least to prevent new charges) and get an individual account if you don't have one already.
  3. Build security and credit.  Open an individual bank account (or more). Transfer your money from any joint account to these accounts to protect it in the short term. Get your paychecks placed in this account, not your former joint account.
  4. Start to prepare your financial and life "battle plan." Where will you live? Can you afford the bills? If you have the kids, what are those expenses? Try to get a rough idea of what will happen to your income and expenses.  Calculate a rough value for what you can expect to be paid in the divorce (or pay out).  Figure half of assets and half of debt will be assigned to you for this rough estimate.  Calculate child support for all children under age 18 (see the Child Support section for more).  Figure some amount for maintenance (formerly alimony) if you have been married over ten years, or developed a chronic medical problem while married that limits your ability to work. Just to work in very rough numbers, figure 10-15% of the spouse's net income additional for maintenance, then project that for one year, three, and five. If your marriage is very long (over 20 years) and there is a serious income imbalance, you may be entitled to substantially higher maintenance, perhaps 30% of net income and up--where the spouse will have to pay you such that your annual income will equal the higher earner's income. We recommend speaking with an accountant or financial planner to get a picture of the future as soon as possible. This will help guide your decisions during the divorce and beyond.
  5. If you are physically threatened or harassed by your spouse, call the police first. They are your first line of defense.
  6. Contact us for more information.