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Separation checklist and helpful links

Separating is a time of heightened emotion and this can sometimes cloud your thinking. Westpac's Separation Checklist helps clarify what you need to do and review.

Your separation checklist

The Separation Checklist is a set of tasks for you to consider, address, collate or action depending on your situation. Its purpose is to help you live with less "I wish I ..." or "if only I thought of ..." and have more "I am glad that I ...".

The Separation Checklist may also raise some questions to address with your family lawyer when you are ready. Download your Separation Checklist (PDF 198KB) today.  

Maintaining your independence

Divorce requires a great degree of planning and work. The efforts that you put into preparation can help to determine how your separation unfolds.

Looking after yourself and preparing your documentation could be a valuable step towards ensuring your independence. Remember:

Consider counselling or therapy

Maintaining mental wellbeing throughout separation is essential and could help with your perspective as you navigate the murky waters. Start by talking with your GP or local doctor.

Coordinate your documentation

Secure your key personal documents, including payslips, your will, your tax returns and citizenship or residency documentation. Make sure you can access them easily.

Prepare for your first consultation with a family lawyer

Make copies of these documents ready to share with a Family Lawyer and have your list of questions ready to ask them.

Create a budget

Use our budget tool to gain a clearer picture of your income and expenses or outgoings. This could help to clarify whether you are saving or if you need to make some changes.

You could also find out more about budgeting and spending from viewing Westpac's Davidson Institute video.

Consider your career goals

Separation could be a great time to think about re-skilling, up-skilling or simply seeking employment. Being employed is a key step to financial independence and freedom.

Reduce or pay off joint debt

Create a plan with your ex-spouse to pay-off any joint personal loans and credit card debt. You might consider consolidating multiple cards or loans into a single personal loan to set an end date for the debts that you shared in your relationship.

Announcing your separation

If you are sure that the separation is permanent, make a plan for who you are going to tell, when and what you will say.

Getting on top of your finances

There are many things that can cause our financial plans to get off track.  When that happens it helps to have some guidance to help you get back on track. The Better Footing guide is a step-by-step guide to establish your current financial position; understand your debts; developing a budget and establishing savings goals to help get your finance back on a better footing.