Post-Divorce Checklist | Twin Cities Minnesota

There are so many details to remember when you are restructuring your family and finances.  Here is a valuable checklist of tasks to complete within 3-6 months of your divorce being finalized.

Divorce Decree

  1. Obtain 2 certified copies of the final Judgment and Decree (J&D) for your divorce
    • Keep one for your records and save one for mortgage refinance or other requirement
  2. Obtain 1 general copy of your J&D
    • Use for name or account ownership changes which do not require a certified decree
  3. Other Documents: Keep copies of all final legal documents


  1. Update your contact information at the children’s schools and/or daycare provider
  2. Update school/daycare emergency contacts, approved people to pick-up/drop-off, etc.
  3. Establish your own accounts for the school’s online access system
  4. Keep written records/receipts of all medical/dental/vision/orthodontic expenses
    • Including insurance claims, uninsured medical expenses, & co-pays paid by you
  5. Keep written records/receipts of all daycare expenses paid by you.
  6. Keep written records/receipts of all extra-curricular activity expenses paid by you.


  1. Change your account passwords and pin numbers
  2. Set up direct deposit or income withholding for child support, spousal support or other payments
  3. Open a new bank and/or credit card account (this helps establish a separate credit history)
  4. Close any joint bank or credit card accounts AFTER confirming that all pending transactions have cleared (checks, ATM/debit withdrawals, automatic withdrawals/payments, etc.)
  5. Close joint safety deposit or post office boxes, and open new ones if needed
  6. Make adjustments to/or open education funds for your children
  7. Review and adjust as needed your investment portfolio allocations
  8. Keep written records of all payment/receipt of spousal and/or child support, property equalizer/settlement, etc.
  9. Six months after your divorce is final and financial changes have been completed, pull a current copy of your credit report and check for errors
  10. Track your income and expenses monthly as you adjust to your new financial reality and cash flow


  1. Make sure you have the Social Security numbers of your former spouse and your children.
  2. As soon as possible, review tax consequences and filing status changes with a tax professional


  1. Make sure you are covered by health insurance — including dental & vision when possible
  2. Secure homeowners or renter’s insurance with appropriate coverage amounts
  3. Update auto insurance coverage
  4. Update life insurance coverage & beneficiaries
  5. Update disability insurance coverage & beneficiaries

Real Estate

  1. Complete mortgage assumption or refinance process if you retained the home.
  2. Get new deeds issued for any real estate owned
  3. Change titles on assets to make sure all property transferred was recorded properly with the county recorder’s office (homes, automobiles, boats, etc.).
  4. Consider changing your locks and alarm system pass codes.

Retirement and Wills

  1. As needed, complete re-titling of investment accounts
  2. If there has been a division of a pension, 401k or IRA, confirm that a Qualified Domestic Relations Order has been prepared, approved by the Court, submitted to the fund administrator, and implemented correctly.
  3. If you were married for at least 10 years, you are entitled to make a claim against your former spouse’s Social Security (this does not negatively impact your former spouse’s benefit).  At the time you are eligible for Social Security, you may elect to receive 100% of your benefit entitlement, or 50% of your former spouse’s entitlement.  This option is invalidated by remarriage.  Visit for more information.
  4. Execute a new will and as applicable, update health care proxy and power of attorney documents.
  5. Update beneficiary designations for life/disability insurance, 401k/IRA, pensions, and other investment accounts and trusts.

Name and Account Changes 

  1. Vehicle title and registration (cars, boats recreational vehicles, etc.)
  2. Driver’s license
  3. Post office
  4. Passport
  5. Social Security
  6. Voter records
  7. Employer and professional licenses/associations
  8. Utilities & other housing related bills (trash, cable, phone, internet, etc.)
  9. Cell phone
  10. Gym/Fitness Center
  11. Netflix, Book/CD/DVD clubs
  12. Email accounts and social networks
  13. Online merchant accounts (eBay, Amazon, etc.)

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