How to Deal with the Unexpected Costs of Divorce

A divorce can be expensive. What you have to figure out is just how expensive. What unexpected costs will you find?

This is not a simple question of just doing the math. Besides your own evaluation of costs, there will be that of your spouse and their lawyer.

It’s difficult, and here are a few five things to consider when figuring out the costs.

Financial Planning

Despite all the conflicting emotions you’ll experience when you go through a divorce, a part of you has to remain utterly logical about financial planning.

You must find out about the legalities and think about how they’ll impact your financial wellbeing.

While a divorce lawyer can answer all your questions about legal rights and obligations, you also have to pay attention to how much you can afford to settle without suffering extreme financial hardship.

How Much Will It Cost?

Adding up all the various costs involved in a divorce can be utterly confusing.  While you could rely on a calculator, a spreadsheet, or a notebook, this will be a slow and often inaccurate way of figuring out what you own and how much you owe.

A better solution for doing the math is to get a divorce calculator. The calculator will help you stay focused on adding up and subtracting the right things.

It’s also a good idea to talk to an accountant. They will help you better understand what things to consider and what to disregard. They will also serve as a detached third-party, giving you an objective assessment of your financial situation. An accountant will add clarity to how you interpret assets and liabilities.

Alimony? Child Support?

Unfortunately, figuring out divorce expenses is not as simple as identifying property and debts, making a list of everything you own and everything you must still pay off. There are also fees you will have to pay various professionals for their invaluable help—therapists, lawyers, accountants.

Then, there is alimony and child support. If you’re the single breadwinner, calculate how much you can afford to pay out each month. If you’re on the receiving end, calculate how much the law entitles you to receive and how well you will manage with it.


You will have many insurance plans as a couple, such as home insurance, auto insurance, and health insurance. The list could be a long one.

After dissolving your joint insurance policies, you must shop for new insurance. The process can be a long, frustrating, and expensive one. Working with an insurance professional to figure out the best policies will make the process go much faster and help you make better decisions.

Moving Expenses?

Packing up and moving may seem like an incidental expense, but it’s something to think about, too, because costs can run high, especially if you have a large house with lots of furniture and are planning on moving to another city or state.

There will also be the cost of renting a new apartment or home, covering rent for the first and last month and putting down a security deposit.

In fact, moving expenses can add up to thousands of dollars. So, this is something else you must factor in when crunching your numbers.

Divorce May Still Be Your Best Option

Despite the emotional cost and financial losses of a divorce, it may still be the best option. It’s messy—involving splitting up the family, moving, making new life decisions, and wrestling with many financial expenses—but if you and your spouse can no longer agree on most things, then embarking on a new course in life is the only rational thing to do.

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