If you were to speak with those who’ve gotten divorced, it’s unlikely that any of them would say that the process of ending their marriage was easy. Splitting up is often both an emotional and financially jarring thing to have to go through. You can ease some of the burdens of this process by taking steps to get certain documents in order right when you see your divorce lingering on the horizon.

When your marriage is crumbling, you’ll want to start gathering together real estate deeds, investment, credit card, loan or mortgage and bank statements, insurance policies, trust documents and wills.

You’ll also want to start writing down all valuable assets that you two share including cars, china, jewelry, electronics, collections, gold or silver bars and cash on hand. You’ll want to write down whether they’re separate or marital assets. The best way to do this is for you to think back to when each of you came into possession of them with pre- and post-marriage being the delineator.

If you signed a prenuptial agreement before you were married, then many of the assets each of you owned and brought into the marriage are listed there. Those will, in most cases, remain with whichever spouse owned it at the time when you divorce. If you didn’t have a prenup when you married, then it will be up to each Westerville spouse to prove that an item belongs exclusively to them by producing receipts or a note that came with the gift.

Assets that you’re unable to prove belongs exclusively to just one of you will likely be considered as marital property. If it is, then it will be split up fairly per Ohio equitable distribution laws.

Oftentimes, one spouse is responsible for handling the household’s finances leaving the other one out in the dark on what’s going on. It’s in situations like these a spouse is vulnerable to not knowing the true value of assets or how much debt they may have amassed. Gathering together these records at the first sign of problems can prove to be invaluable in helping your divorce attorney negotiate the fairest settlement in your case.