Sharing Finances--What to Do First
There can be a lot of details to handle when managing shared finances. Take care of them right away to make your transition smoother and simpler.
- If you are changing your name, immediately order a new Social Security card and driver's license with the new name. Notify your employer, creditors, and all your bank and credit card account providers and insurance agents.
- Request copies of your credit reports to check for accuracy. You can get free reports at AnnualCreditReport.com.
- Consider your tax-filing choices. Check with your tax professional to see whether you should file taxes jointly or separately. Update your W-4 forms.
our two cents
- Coordinate health insurance. You and your spouse are probably covered by your individual employers' health insurance. It may be less expensive to cover you both under one plan.
- Determine your life insurance needs now and if you have children.
- Review and update files for all personal accounts and property such as retirement accounts and insurance policies.
- Create or update your estate plan.
- Create durable powers of attorney for finances and health care so each of you can make financial and medical decisions for the other in the case of an incapacitating injury or illness.