BY JASON ALDERMAN
No doubt you’ve seen many warnings against sharing personal or financial information with strangers, but what about your spouse – or ex-spouse? A recent study by McAfee uncovered some unsettling results:
- Although 96 percent of adults surveyed trust their significant other with passwords, intimate photos and other personal content, only 32 percent have asked their ex to delete the information when ending the relationship.
- One in five people said they’re likely to log into their spouse’s Facebook account at least once a month.
- Some 30 percent admitted they’d “cyber-stalked” their significant other’s ex on social media.
Given the high rate of divorce and how frequently marriages end acrimoniously, it’s not a big leap to think that a scorned lover could severely damage your credit and reputation. If you’re getting divorced, here are some important legal, financial and privacy considerations:
If you and your spouse are in complete agreement on how you wish to divide assets and settle debts, you may be able get by with a do-it-yourself divorce kit. It’s still wise to have a divorce attorney review the forms to make sure you haven’t overlooked anything.
If your separation is more complicated but relatively amicable, you may also want to try collaborative divorce, mediation or arbitration:
- Collaborative divorce. Both parties retain a lawyer and the four of you hash out an agreement outside the courtroom. You each control the final agreement instead of having to abide by a judge’s decision.
- Mediation. You each have lawyers but hire a third-party mediator to work through differences on critical issues. Mediators don’t have the legal authority to impose final decisions.
- Arbitration. Like mediation, except that the arbiter hands down a binding agreement by which you each must abide.