When many people file for divorce, one of the first things they think of is closing down their bank account. They may have a joint bank account with their partner, and they want to protect the money that they already have in it. They also know that they don’t want to send any more of their paychecks to that account if they get them through direct deposit.
What they’ll do is simply close down the account, take all of the money out of it, and start an individual account on their own. They will then redirect their payments to this new account, and they think they have solved some of these financial issues. But there’s one big problem with doing it this way.
Your spouse may have a right to some of that money
The problem is that you and your spouse both own the money that is in a joint account. It is marital property and it needs to be divided between the two of you.
So it may make sense to you to close the account down if you think that your spouse is going to steal the money, but doing so just means that you are the one who now has taken the money from them. This could lead to all sorts of issues in your divorce case. You are better off to either talk with them about dividing the money or to simply stop depositing new money into the account, freezing it until the existing balance gets divided during property division.
In order to avoid mistakes and to get what you deserve out of the divorce, be sure you carefully consider your legal options.