Shielding your credit from divorce damage
More likely than not, you have worked hard over the years to protect your credit score by paying bills on time, not overextending your debt to income ratio, and the like, but what do you do to shield your credit from the financial hardships of divorce? Chances are your credit will take a hit but consider the following on how to ensure you lessen the blow to your credit score.
Check your credit
Is there anything reflecting on your credit that you are not aware of? Are the balances of the accounts accurate? You might consider freezing your credit or engaging the services of a monitoring company to alleviate any credit being pledged in your name without your consent. If upon review of your credit you notice inaccuracies, contact the credit bureau immediately and dispute the reported inaccuracy. Afterall, post-divorce you will be relying on your credit score to help rebuild your new life.
Consider Closing Joint Accounts Not in use or Where Appropriate
It is important to remember that financial institutions are not bound by divorce decrees and will seek repayment for outstanding debts from any party that is still financially responsible as to the debt. If you continue to have joint account with an estranged spouse or an ex-spouse, talk to your attorney about the advisability of closing such account.
Create a budget and stick to it
Be sure your budget includes a method to pay down your debt, which will in turn raise your credit score. If you had financial difficulties in your marriage with two incomes maintaining one home, you may have more trouble maintaining two homes with the same income.
Following these simple steps will help you move forward from your divorce with a credit score you can be proud of. Contacting an attorney might be your first step forward to protecting your credit.