A second marriage is an opportunity for a woman to review her role in the family’s financial planning if she takes a back seat during the first marriage, according to financial advisor Paula Maughan.
Married women often compromise their long-term financial decisions to the husband, especially in the first marriage. Maughan, who specializes in counseling women in their 50s and 60s as they begin a new phase in their lives, said getting married again is a good time to regain some of that strength. Mogan is a consultant with Mogan Wealth Management at UBS in Rockland, Massachusetts, who works with her two sons, David and Timothy, is a CFP consultant and a certified local partner advisor.
According to UBS data, 9 out of 10 divorced or widowed women feel good about themselves because they make financial decisions themselves, underscoring the fact that being in charge of your own money can be possible, Maughan said in a recent interview.
She said that many women think their husbands have more knowledge about finances than they do. When they are alone they learn to make these decisions on their own.
“The first thing to have when starting a life with a new husband is complete transparency,” Maughan said. “Often spouses have families from the first marriage and they also have financial problems. For women, understand your situation, then understand the situation of the husband.”
A second marriage, she added, is an opportunity to put all your cards on the table.
Decisions must be made about how to divide the money among each person’s children and whether any pensions or other payments should go to the first spouse. She explained that when everything is laid out ahead of time, it avoids conflicts in the future.
The couple may want to consider having three bank accounts – my account, yours, and ours. She added that they have to decide what is discretionary income and what is not. This is especially important if one person is a spender and the other is a saver. The couple should assess their past situations and any existing debts, such as college debts to themselves or their children.
Estate plans should be reviewed by an estate attorney to ensure that children, grandchildren, and charities receive the money that each spouse intends.
“These things are just as important for some modest means, as they are for a wealthy couple,” she said.
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