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An Oregon Divorce Will Impact Finances

Psychologists report that divorce is one of the most stressful events that a person can experience. Divorce affects not only people’s emotional and social situations, but it also has a deep impact on people’s finances. The cost of divorce varies because of how people’s situations differ, but those thinking of divorce should be aware of the variety of ways that divorce could affect them financially.

Living Expenses

One of the most immediately recognizable financial shifts after a couple splits is the need to maintain two households where there used to be one. Bills such as rent or mortgage payments, utilities, homeowner’s or renter’s insurance and maintenance may double. In addition, many now have to adjust to paying those bills with only one income, when they were used to living on two incomes.


Property divisions that accompany divorce may also have surprising tax implications. Couples who sell assets like stocks or the family home in order to make them more easily divisible may end up paying capital gains taxes on any profits they made from the sale.

Similarly, those who need to empty 401(k) or other retirement accounts in order to divide the assets in the accounts may end up paying fees for early withdrawal if the parties are younger than 59 1/2 years old.


Ex-spouses may have an ongoing financial relationship after the marriage is over. When the earning capacity of one spouse is much larger than the other, the higher-earning spouse may have to pay alimony to the other spouse. If there were any children in the marriage, the non-custodial parent will usually have to pay child support.

Legal Fees

Unless the parties agree to a pro se divorce, in which each spouse represents him or herself, they will both need to pay legal fees. The more hostile the spouses are, the higher the legal fees are likely to run because the attorneys in the matter will need to spend more time trying to negotiate or litigate issues such as property division, child custody and support.

Even those who divorce fairly peacefully will still incur some legal fees for drafting separation agreements and court filing fees.

Seek Legal Counsel

Deciding to divorce can be a big step, since it affects so many areas of a person’s life. If you are considering divorce, talk to an experienced divorce attorney who can discuss your options with you.