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Is ending a toxic marriage a New Year's resolution?

Now that 2018 is here, it is time to start working on your resolutions. Perhaps you have plans to exercise more, improve your diet or give up smoking. But is ending your marriage on the list? If so, you are not alone. According to the Huffington Post, divorce rates skyrocket in January

If you are struggling in a toxic marriage, you probably want to leave it in the past. The new year is the perfect time to start fresh, but you will want to do some planning first. Here are some things you should do if you want to fulfill your resolution of getting a divorce. 

1. Prepare for expenses

If you do not have realistic expectations and a budget in place, you could be blindsided by the costs of a divorce. Make a budget if you have not already. Your budget should consist of:

  • Food
  • Utilities
  • Transportation
  • Clothing
  • Insurance
  • Entertainment
  • Childcare
  • Education

Along with developing a budget, you should consider the costs of living apart and any potential support payments. 

2. Take stock of your assets

Get an idea of everything you own, whether it is personal or marital property. This includes any real estate, vehicles, financial accounts, retirement accounts, stocks and household goods. Having a list will make the property division process go more smoothly. 

3. Review your estate plan

As you get closer to dissolving your marriage, you will want to take another look at your estate planning documents. You may want to revise your will, choose a different health care proxy or update your beneficiary designations. A divorce is a significant life change that warrants reevaluating your estate planning goals. 

You should not have to stay in an awful marriage through another year. If you want to start your new life and leave your current marriage behind you, take these three guidelines into consideration to get closer to your 2018 divorce.

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