Preparing for divorce as a stay-at-home mother

On Behalf of | Feb 15, 2024 | Blog, Family Law |

Stay-at-home mothers choose to devote themselves to childcare over careers for many reasons, from financial to schooling concerns. Regardless of the reason, they sacrifice a great deal.

This sacrifice becomes even more apparent post-divorce. Stay-at-home mothers may not have the financial resources and job-hunting capability they otherwise would, which can put them at a disadvantage after the divorce. However, they can prepare in advance to ease their situation.

Gather financial documents

Stay-at-home mothers can start by gathering all relevant financial documents, including bank statements, tax returns, investment accounts and property records. Having these documents organized and readily accessible will make it easier to assess their financial situation and advocate for their fair share during the divorce proceedings.

Establish separate credit

Those who do not have their own credit need to begin building it. Ways to do so include opening a credit card or taking out a small loan in their names to establish a credit history. This will be important for securing housing, car loans and other financial needs as they transition to life post-divorce.

Create a budget

Understanding current expenses and income is necessary for solid financial planning. Stay-at-home mothers need to create a new budget that excludes their partner and outlines their monthly expenses, including housing, utilities, groceries and childcare.

Explore employment opportunities

Even if the court awards spousal support, it may only last a set period. Stay-at-home mothers going through the divorce process need to update their resumes, network with contacts and research job openings in their area. Even part-time or remote work can provide valuable income and stability during this time of transition. It is especially important to start early if they have been out of the workforce for a significant time. They may consider returning to school and gaining additional certifications and qualifications while they have support to improve their chances of obtaining a better job.

According to Quartz, nearly a fourth of American mothers are stay-at-home ones. Even though they fulfill a valuable role, stay-at-home parents often face the scorn of others and have a financial disadvantage after divorce due to a lack of their own savings and relevant job skills. Taking steps in advance can help mitigate this.


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