Despite advances toward equality that women have made in the past century, more than half still leave financial decisions up to their husbands. Unfortunately, many Minnesota wives find out too late that not being involved in family finances is a big mistake. Women who don’t know the specifics of their financial state may find some surprises when they get divorced.

Not all surprises are bad; some divorcing women learned that they had more money than they knew. Their husbands may have 401(k) accounts, real estate or investments they weren’t aware of before they filed for divorce. However, the mere fact that these accounts existed without their knowledge could lead women in this situation to focus on their own financial education.

Subsequent marriages are significantly more likely to end in divorce than first marriages. Women who learned their lesson from financial mistakes they made the first time they were married are more involved in financial decisions the second time around. Instead of allowing their spouse to manage the family’s money, women who have already lost wealth due to inattention tend to focus on learning about personal finance so that they can have control over their own money.

Spouses who aren’t involved in financial decision-making may not have access to all of the documents they need to proceed with their divorce. An attorney with experience helping clients in a high-asset divorce may help a spouse uncover all of their marital assets and debts so that they have a chance at getting a fair divorce settlement. This investigation may lead a divorcing spouse to get the education they need to be able to manage their own finances in the future.