Families Change Guide to Separation & Divorce

3.11 - Activity: Financial Stages of Separation: Stage One

ACTIVITY: Financial Stages of Separation Checklist

Stage 1 - Preparing for Financial Separation

Obtain information about separation and family law, including property division laws. How will your property be divided?
Review the specifics of all financial accounts. Make sure you have access to all information: account numbers, financial institutions, insurers, your tax accountant, important documents and contact information for each.
Make copies of all relevant documents and computer files with financial data for yourself.
Meet with a financial planning professional and a tax accountant to discuss the financial and tax implications of decisions you will need to make as you plan for separation.
Make sure you have access to savings of your own in the event that you must suddenly rely on your own resources to meet household and personal expenses.
Make sure you have a credit card in your own name. If not, apply for one.
Begin an inventory of all separately and jointly-owned assets. Include investments, cash, vehicles, real estate and furniture.
Obtain appraisals of assets such as art, antiques, fine jewellery and other tangible items.
Make a list of all outstanding debts.
Verify the contents of any joint safety deposit box.
Pay down the balance of as many bills as possible.
3.11 - Activity: Financial Stages of Separation: Stage One