Post Divorce Checklist

Immediately

If you are paying child support and/or alimony to your former spouse, set up monthly or bi-weekly payments

If you are receiving child support and/or alimony from your former spouse, provide your bank account details so he/she can set up payments

For each pension/401k/retirement plan being divided or transferred, make sure that a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) has been prepared, signed and certified by the Court, and submitted to the fund administrator

Obtain a certified copy of your divorce decree from the Clerk’s Office at the courthouse

Notify your employer of your change in marital status

Close joint bank and credit card accounts

If your former spouse is conveying real property to you, get a quitclaim deed and conveyance tax return from your former spouse

If you are conveying real property to your former spouse, provide him/her with a quitclaim deed and conveyance tax return

Record your quitclaim deed on the land records in your Town Clerk’s office

Update the children’s schools about contact information of you and former spouse, emergency contacts, school pick-ups/drop-offs, etc.

Divide all personal property as specified in the separation agreement/divorce decree

Change the name on utility bills to reflect who is now responsible

Within 30 days

If you are receiving a transfer of funds from your former spouse’s IRA, open a suitable account to which the funds can be transferred and complete any forms required by the Plan

Execute all necessary COBRA documents to ensure continued health insurance coverage, or make sure that your ex-spouse has done the same

Change motor vehicle titles to reflect ownership as specified in the separation agreement/divorce decree

Notify your auto insurer of any changes in automobile drivers, ownership, and addresses

Make sure that your name has been removed from any debts or loans that are no longer your responsibility

If you change your name (such as reverting to your maiden name), notify all of your creditors of the change

If you move, notify all of your creditors of your change of address

Notify Social Security Administration of your name change

Apply for a driver's license with your new name on it

Change your name on your bank accounts and checks, or open new accounts in your new name

Change your address on your bank accounts and checks

Change the beneficiary on your life insurance policy, if permissible under the separation agreement/divorce decree

Obtain life insurance naming your former spouse and/or children as beneficiaries to ensure continued support if you should die, if required by the separation agreement/divorce decree

Within 1 to 12 months

Apply for credit in your own name

Obtain a new copy of your credit report to make sure that the accounts you closed were really closed and that the credit agency file has been updated

Prepare a new will, advance directive (living will) and estate documents

Take all other actions required by the separation agreement/divorce decree

Remove your former spouse's name from your lease or mortgage if required by the separation agreement/divorce decree

Ongoing

If you change jobs, notify your new employer of any court-ordered support, if required by law to do so, to effectuate continued automatic withholding

Keep your scheduled visitation times with your children

If you were married for 10+ years, you may have a claim against your former spouse’s Social Security. When you become eligible for Social Security, you can receive either 100% of your benefit entitlement, or the equivalent of 50% of your former spouse’s entitlement (www.ssa.gov/planners/retire/divspouse.html)

Keep records of payment or receipt of alimony/maintenance, child support and other support payments made to, or received from your former spouse; don’t pay in cash – use checks or bank transfers

Keep records of your children’s medical costs, including insurance claims, co- pays, etc.

If co-parenting is an issue, keep records of how the visits with the other parent went and any specific problems that may have arisen

Make sure you have the Social Security numbers of your former spouse and your children - you may need them for tax returns

You may need your former spouse to sign an IRS Form 8332 to indicate what your agreement is regarding claiming the children as exemptions (www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f8332.pdf)