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Dave Says: How to Start Over after Divorce

Dave Ramsey - April 30, 2013

What is the best way to move forward after a divorce? What do you do with your settlement money? Dave Ramsey has the answers.

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Dear Dave,

My divorce will be final in a month, and I’ll have $100,000 when everything is over. I will also have $8,000 in credit card debt, and I’m currently unemployed. Do you have any suggestions to help me move forward?

Meryl   

Dear Meryl,

The first thing I want you to do is raise your right hand and promise never to use credit cards again. Then, if you still have any of those awful things, I want you to cut them up and close out the accounts. The next step is for you to find some kind of income, whether it’s a regular job or just something part-time to get money rolling in on a regular basis.

Your credit card debt is a small part of your financial picture right now. I think I’d go ahead and pay off the cards. That way, you’ll be debt-free and still have $92,000 in the bank. But here’s the key. You have to live like that money doesn’t exist. Use just enough to get yourself settled, and go make some money so you can eat and keep the lights on.

A year from now, when you’re past some of this stuff emotionally and looking toward a new future, that money will still be sitting there. As long as you have this mentality, you’ll come through this mess stronger and in good financial shape. God bless you, Meryl!

—Dave

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* Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He’s authored four New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

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