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Parents should plan for college savings during divorce

When going through a divorce, Tennessee couples with children have a lot to think about. The welfare of the children should be the number one priority in any divorce, so in addition to discussing who will retain custody, parents should also consider their children's future education and college savings.

For example, even though couples cannot anticipate where their children will go to college, they can agree to stay in touch after their divorce and each save for their children's college educations. Although communication is key in saving for college education after a divorce, experts advise that setting a framework for saving during a divorce settlement makes expectation more clear.

One way to do that is for parents to freeze their 529 plan account, which is the account used for educational savings. Freezing the account makes it so that neither parent can withdraw money from the account or use it for another child in a new marriage. Then, parents can start their own individual savings accounts specifically for saving for their children's education. It is a good idea to discuss how each parent plans on saving during the divorce proceedings.

There are many issues to be discussed when a couple decides to get a divorce, and it may be wise for both parties to seek the representation of a divorce lawyer. Divorce lawyers can help their clients negotiation division of property and other issues in their divorce settlements to ensure that their clients receive a fair settlement that is in their best interest as well as the best interest of their children. Divorce lawyers may also help clients ensure that all terms in a divorce settlement are clear and understood.

Source: US News, "Discuss College Savings During Divorce Process", Reyna Gobel, April 29, 2013