Tips for Your Divorce
If you are going through a divorce currently or are contemplating one I can assure you that one thing that you will not be lacking for it advice. Most of that advice will be unsolicited as well.
HANDLING A SAFE DEPOSIT BOX WHILE GETTING DIVORCEDIf you and your spouse have a safe deposit box at your credit union or other financial institution then you should know that what you all have in the box is actually what is considered property- not the box itself.
From my experiences, most safe deposit boxes are accessible by both spouses and as such it makes some sense for you to make sure that you have an idea of what is inside of it at the beginning of your divorce.
Why do I suggest this, you may be asking. Our office has a former client who was in a position where he didn*t have a safe deposit box but a physical safe that only he had access to. When he was away on a business trip his wife decided to raid the safe. She and her attorney at first insisted that she did not do so. However, as luck would have it our client contacted a locksmith in his area to examine the safe with him. This was the same locksmith that our client*s wife had contacted to break into the safe.
We provided this information to the wife*s attorney and the taken items were returned along with a promise to not to act in this manner moving forward.
The real point I*m trying to get at was our client knew exactly what was in that safe down to the specific amount of money that was in there. While he traveled a great deal for work, he knew what was in the safe and was able to report that information to me when he first became aware of the illegal access that had been committed on his safe.
Locate a witness to go to the bank with you to inventory what you have in your safe deposit box. You can also speak to an employee at the bank to have them notate that you were in fact present on that specific day so that there is a record of your actions. Someone other than a family member would be a good idea
ACT BEFORE TEMPORARY ORDERS ARE IN PLACEIf there are temporary orders in place for your case then you most likely are not going to be able to do anything to affect the contents of bank accounts or safe deposit boxes. Otherwise, you should be able to remove whatever items you decide to and place them into your own safe deposit box or personal safe.
In the event that the items that you remove are your separate property then there should be no issue with your removing the items at any point. However, if you are removing objects or property that could be argued to be community property then you should probably tread lightly.
Just as the contents of safe deposit boxes should be handled cautiously, the contents of a checking or savings account should be as well- at least while temporary orders are in place. This is due to the inability of a person to alter the course of your money once a divorce has begun. If your paycheck is automatically deposited into the family checking account then it should remain there for the duration of your divorce.