1040 Form (1)Some people hang on to just about everything. Receipts for department store purchases are necessary if you want to return the item later. Having your will handy and in a safe place is important when your heirs try to distribute your estate according to your last wishes. The mortgage on your home and other financial papers prove ownership and also spell out the rights and obligations of the parties. Over a lifetime, you accumulate a lot of paper and important documents. When a couple files for divorce, it can get confusing as to what papers are needed and what can be trashed.


Consumer Reports breaks down documents into categories when suggesting how long to hang on to things. Some good rules of thumb are to keep track of banking deposit and withdrawal slips only long enough to reconcile your statement and hanging on to credit card bills until proof of payment has posted.  When divorce comes into play though, it is recommended you keep track of documents until your case has been finalized. Examples of the types of documents you should hang on to include:


● Deeds and mortgages.

● Car and boat titles.

● Pay stubs and income tax returns.

● Retirement and investment account statements.

● Life and medical insurance policies.

● Home and auto insurance information.

● Birth certificates for any children born of the marriage.

● Any prenuptial agreement signed by the parties prior to marriage.

● Wills and Trusts.


Having information about the crucial issues in your divorce at your fingertips helps your case move more smoothly. It is also beneficial to have important financial papers at the ready, in case your spouse does not. Being prepared gives you an advantage because you are more familiar with assets and liabilities. Knowing what you have helps you decide how you want it divided. Trained legal professionals can assist you by identifying what information is trash, and what information is treasure.


For more information about what information you should keep when filing for divorce, call our office for help. We offer an initial visit for a onetime fee. Contact a qualified family law attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast today.