Miles Larbey, the senior executive leader of Australian Security Investment Commission’s Money Smart, has compiled a list of financial pitfalls stemming from relationship breakups. While we at Financial Friend don’t wish this situation upon you, it’s better to be prepared for any eventuality.

  • Ensure you have closed off any joint credit card accounts, or at least halted any transactions. This prevents your partner from racking up debt you may be required to pay.
  • Joint accounts should likewise be closed as soon as possible. Ensure direct debits are paid and that your salary is going into your personal account.
  • Compile a list of personal and jointly-owned possessions. Include financial items like superannuation accounts, trust accounts, titles, deeds, timeshares etc. Have printed copies of statements proving who owns what and the balances on the date of separation.
  • Update the rental and utilities agreements. Ensure your name doesn’t appear on a lease or utility at a property you no longer reside at. Have the billers name transferred to your partner so you’re not responsible for anything once you leave.
  • Update your Will. A divorce or separation does not automatically void a Will.
  • Do a budget. Your financial circumstances will have changed as you now may be living on a single income. Don’t get caught out by living the same lifestyle with the same expenses but half the income.
  • Find out if you are not entitled to any benefits or income support from Centrelink.
  • Review your insurance.
  • Sort out the details of your superannuation. It is an asset that can be split up by agreement or court order.
  • Contact the Department of Human Services to explain the child support options and aid for parents – if this applies to you.

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