Widowed or Divorced?

Whether you are recently widowed or whether you have experienced a separation or divorce the financial issues don’t go away. Actually, for those who have left the daunting financial task to their spouse it can be a tremendous chore to understand your financial picture without them. I’ve always insisted that both spouses attend my annual review meetings. Often met by glassy-eyed stares from the uninterested partner I attempt to make the language simple and take the complication out of the explanations in hopes of showing them that they shouldn’t feel intimidated by their financial decisions. It’s also an attempt, by me, to get some interest. OK, I don’t expect someone to suddenly develop an interest in their finances but I do hope to instill some understanding of what they have and how it works, both now and in their future. It’s just a conversation after all. Nobody bites! That being said, with the transition of being suddenly on your own, these conversations come back to memory with new meaning. Not only that but also you will have a relationship with your Investment Advisor, Accountant or Estate planner. There is nothing more discouraging than to go see a professional, who has been the mainstay of your personal financial world, for the first time….when you are in an emotional state. To make sure that you are never put in this position ensure that you see your Financial Advisor at least once a year. If they are good at what they do tell them you are not really interested in the financial world and they should be able to take the complicated issues and simplify them for you. If they cannot do this…then find a new advisor that can. If you lack trust because you aren’t sure whether these advisors are acting in your best interest or whether they are suggesting changes to take advantage of you then you can hire an independent advisor who doesn’t manage money (perceived conflict of interest in the advice channel) and who is fee-based. Fee-based advisors get paid to help guide you….so you don’t have to worry about how they are manipulating their advice to ensure they receive compensation.

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