Virginia parents who are going through a divorce should consider how the divorce might affect their finances, and therefore their child’s educational future. A study from Sociological Science found that the financial repercussions of a dissolved marriage may deter white children from attending college. The same study found that nonwhite children were not as badly affected. The study states that this is because white parents are generally in better financial situations than parents who are not white, so they tend to have more resources to lose following a divorce.
Divorce can impact finances in several ways. For example, because many women are kept in the dark about their families’ financial situations, a woman who is newly divorced may only then discover how much debt the family was in. She will then be responsible for her share of the debt, which she may have never realized she would have to pay.
She may also be surprised by the costs of private health insurance and other monthly expenses. This may lead to her putting aside less money for her child’s college fund, which very well might result in him or her deciding to go to an inexpensive college, or perhaps choosing not to go to college at all. Many college-aged teens and young adults are trying to avoid student loans and may not want to go that route, even if it means fewer career opportunities in the future.
Parents who believe they will soon file for divorce should take precautionary steps toward understanding their financial situation to make sure they will be able to provide their child with the support he or she needs. Consulting a qualified attorney with experience in divorce and property division may go a long way toward building a solid financial future for both parents and their child.