Financial Mindfulness and Empowerment in Marriage [An Introduction]
As a divorce attorney for over 25 years, I have represented many different types of spouses with different levels of financial savvy. Some people have a real grasp on the family finances while others know very little. The way couples share and manage their personal financial information can create significant advantages/disadvantages during a divorce action–but the same basic concept rings true even in healthy relationships where poor communication about personal finance matters can drive unhealthy imbalances and conflict over time. The spouse who is “unaware” or only partially informed sits in a disadvantaged position with respect to either contributing to or making those decisions that will guide your family to financial security and maintaining its well-being.
Practical Relationship Tips and Best Practices for Couples from a Westport, CT Divorce Lawyer
Financial Mindfulness is essential to empowerment, and balance in both life and marriage. In this blog series, I will share the best practices that I have developed and actively promote to all my clients, followers, and friends as “Must Share” and “Must Know” information for couples across the following topics:
- Tax Returns (Last 5 Years)
- Credit Cards (Numbers, Key Codes, Revolving/Limits; Guarantors)
- Insurance Policies (Whole/Term; Beneficiaries)
- Banking Relationships and Bank Accounts
- Investments and Brokerage Accounts
- Mortgages and Investment Properties
- Loans (Guarantors)
- Trusts and Estate Documents
- Retirement Plan / Pension / Tax-Deferred Compensation / 401(k) / Profit Sharing Plan Accounts
- LLC Operating Agreements for which you and your spouse are 100% Owners, Managing Members, or Members.
- Usernames and Password (access all joint accounts above)
In the coming weeks and months, I will explore and explain the importance of each of the above topics with the goal of providing a framework for couples to achieve “Financial Mindfulness, Empowerment and Balance in Marriage.”
Attorney Melissa Needle is a lifetime resident of Connecticut. She was born in New Haven and raised in Fairfield. Her family has deep roots in Connecticut and she is a third-generation attorney. Since her admission to the bar in 1990, Ms. Needle has practiced matrimonial law exclusively.