Managing children and finances during separation and divorce

Your relationship with your partner has ended, but you are still parents of the same children and no doubt there is work to do in dividing your finances.  Here are some tips and links to help you navigate through what can be a very complex time.

Parenting tips after family break-up, separation or divorce

Everyone’s situation is different, but you need to work out how you will continue parenting your children in a positive and cooperative way.

Remember, one of the most valuable ways to help your children adjust to their new circumstances is successful co-parenting.

Here are some parenting tips for separated or divorced parents:

  • Develop a parenting plan – This lets both of you know what is expected of each other in terms of parenting rights and responsibilities. The plan should include living arrangements, custody or visitation schedules, finances, education, medical and emotional care.
  • Manage family conflicts – Ongoing conflicts can really hurt children. If communicating with your former partner is difficult, counselling can help. Contact the Family Relationship Advice Line on 1800 050 321.
  • Accept you may have different parenting styles – As long as your children are safe and secure, the children will learn that different rules apply in different situations.
  • Give your former partner time to adjust – If you previously did most of the parenting then your former partner will need some time to learn the ropes as a single parent. If you haven’t done much of the parenting, give your partner time to adjust to your new skills and level of responsibility.

For more information

Managing finances during separation or divorce

Separation or divorce is a stressful and upsetting time. It also unfortunately negatively impacts any wealth that has built up and any preparations we’ve made for the future. Sometimes the only thing to do is get life back on track by taking control of our income, debts and spending. We can start by taking stock of the day-to-day finances, then work up to tackling longer-term money issues.


There are many helpful websites out there and even a service to Subscribe to “One Day at a Time,” a free daily email messages designed to encourage you. You’ll receive 365 uplifting messages that will help guide you through the healing process.

Tips on how to save your marriage

Government and legal information on separation and divorce New Zealand

Applying for a divorce in New Zealand