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Help! How do I Pay for Christmas for the Kids During My Separation?
As the holiday season quickly approaches, many families are busy decorating the house, buying presents, and planning for out of town guests for the holidays. Many American families share in these common traditions. One other common tradition is spending more money than we have during the holidays. For a lot of divorcing couples this indulgent behavior may seem even more attractive because of the emotions they are feeling during the holiday season.
Divorcing parents may be tempted to ease the pain of the divorce through lavish spending on their children during the holiday season even though funds are low. And don't forget, if you are legally separated from your current spouse, it is likely that your soon to be former spouse will not be responsible for the debt you occurred during your holiday shopping spree.
Not all is lost. There are many ways for you to fill up your emotional tank during the holidays without spending an exuberant amount of money. Will your children remember video games you bought or will they likely remember the time spent together at the your local tree lighting, making snow angels in the snow, decorating cookies, and other fun holiday activities.
Let other family members prepare dinner for the family this year. Most friends and family during this time will understand the hardship that you're going through and will help out. Do not resist, although it may be difficult to accept the help, don't take on the added expense and stress this year.
Thinking twice about over spending this holiday season will help you more effectively get financially back on track after the holidays than the quick emotional fix that over spending with bring. For example, if you are planning on charging items on a credit card, interest alone may cost you hundreds of dollars, depending on how long it takes to pay off the debt and the interest rate that is applied to the credit card. Make sure you do have a plan on how you will pay off the debt after Christmas if you do use credit cards for your holiday spending.
Although over spending during the holidays is a common American tradition that none of us should participate in, this holds especially true if you and your spouse are going through a divorce.
The Colorado court awards alimony based on the spouses' financial situation, earning capacity, income, and the circumstances of the marriage. When one spouse stayed home to care for the children for several years while the other spouse earned the income supporting the family, the court will generally require the working spouse to continue supporting the family.
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