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Repeat Divorce: More Common and More Complicated

You've probably heard the statistic: 50 percent of marriages end in divorce; but did you know that number rises another 17 percent for second marriages? An analysis of 2010 data by the National Center for Family and Marriage Research at Bowling Green State University in Ohio found that the overall divorce rate was much greater for second marriages.

Going through the divorce process for the second or even the third or fourth time can be even more complicated and more financially devastating than your first divorce. This is because the second divorce may be further dividing an individual's financial resources.

For example, as a result of the first divorce a spouse may be paying child support and spousal support. Many states only look at the income available to pay support and don't consider the person's other financial obligations. This means a repeat divorced individual could end up paying multiple ex-spouses and have very little left over.

Additionally, the spouse likely has not recovered from the property division of the first marriage. He or she may only have half of the retirement assets and may still be paying taxes from selling assets. The recession has made property division in second divorces even harder.

Avoid the Stress of A Second or Third Divorce - Have a Prenuptial Agreement

Prenuptial agreements are a great way to protect assets in repeat divorces. Deciding how assets are going to be divided prior to the marriage keeps costs and stress levels down when going through a second or third divorce. Prenuptial agreements can also provide inheritance protection to children of previous marriages.

For those that find themselves going through divorce a second or third time without a prenuptial agreement, it is important to collect financial paperwork that shows what was owned by who at the beginning of the second marriage. It is also important to keep a list of all assets and liabilities acquired during the marriage. An experienced divorce attorney can guide you through this process.

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