Divorce, both agreed and contested can be a timely process that takes a lot out of the family members involved. While your focus during the divorce may have been child custody and asset division, your legal concerns aren’t gone when the ink on your decree dries. Here are five legal steps you must take after you’ve already gotten a divorce.
Post Divorce, Change Your Name with the Social Security Administration
After the legal separation from your ex-spouse, it’s time to reclaim your maiden name if it was changed when you got married. Working with your divorce lawyer will help you understand how to change your name and when without making it a hurdle during the process.
After notifying the Social Security Administration of the legal changes, you’ll have to take extra steps to cover your tracks in all other major areas. This includes:
- Driver’s Licenses
In most divorces, homes and vehicles are items that often change ownership. If you’ve gained these types of assets in your divorce, make sure to retitle the property through your local government. Failure to do so can result in financial issues down the line if your ex fails to pay debts and creditors place a lien on the property.
While this is a monumental step into your independence, your divorce lawyer will help you gather and draft all necessary documents to keep your property in your name.
Enforce Your Divorce Decree
If you have a difficult ex-spouse who isn’t willing to follow divorce decrees, you may need to discuss the enforcement of your decree with your lawyer. This will involve filing a contempt case with the courts. Even if you are dealing with out of state issues, the majority of courts will acknowledge your enforced divorce decree. This can be a pricey final legal step but guarantees your divorce decrees will be followed.
Review Your Account Beneficiaries
The last thing you want are specific account benefits to go towards the wrong person. Work with your divorce lawyer to review your accounts and important documents in order to ensure your ex-spouse is no longer part of the equation. Important things to review are:
- Your will
It’s very important to change your account beneficiaries because in the instance where something happened to you and things weren’t changed, even with a divorce your ex-spouse could still reap the benefits.
Keep Track of Official Divorce Documents
While this isn’t a legal step that requires anything more than organization, it’s still something you should hold in importance. Find a safe spot in your home where you can easily access a copy of your divorce decree, financial documents, appraisals, and other miscellaneous items that you feel are important from your divorce (i.e. your old marriage certificate).
Make Legally Moving on Simple with Marx, Altman & Johnson
The divorce lawyers of Marx, Altman & Johnson understand how physically and emotionally taxing divorce can be. We want your experience with the legal process to be fluid and clean cut. If you have questions about divorce or need help legally moving on from your ex-spouse, we want to help! Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with one of our trusted attorneys.