12 Personal Finance Lessons, Broken Down, In Woody Allen’s ‘Blue Jasmine’

3. Get your own lawyer. Jasmines clearly had her fill of lawyers, too, but flashbacks to her earlier life suggest she may not have brought them in early enough. There is no mention of a prenuptial agreement, but if there ever was one, Jasmine would have been wise to have her own lawyer representing her in negotiations. In any event, since Hal had a son by a previous marriage, the couple should have had separate lawyers draw up their wills. (See Estate Planning For Couples: Should It Be A Solo Or A Duet? ) In the process, an ultra-diligent lawyer in the post-Madoff era might have discovered Hals wrongdoing early on. And certainly once there was any cause for suspicion, Jasmine should have skipped Pilates class or bowed out of lunch with the girls now and then to see the best white-collar defense lawyer her wads of money could buy. She knows that her husbands partner quit their business, Global Innovations, because as Jasmine puts it delicately to Hal, hes not comfortable with some of the innovations from a business standpoint. Hal punts. Let me deal with it, he says, adding, Is there anything you want that you dont have? Their lavish lifestyle includes a Park Avenue apartment, multiple country homes and a chauffeur-driven limousine. Ultimately, they lose all of it. 4. Jewelry is not an investment. Hal showers Jasmine with gifts of jewelry,perhaps to distract her from his dallianceswith other women, to assuage his guilt or both. And when the going gets tough, she has a hard time liquidating these assets. I sold what jewels and furs I could hide from Uncle Sam, she tells Ginger pitifully calling into question her own ethical standards. But as much as this stuff costs new, when youre forced to sell, you cant give it away, she says. (For practical advice about how to get the most for your baubles, see Four Tips for Selling Your Diamond Jewelry .) 5. Dont have designer handbags monogrammed. This reduces their resale value, as Jasmine discovers when she tries to sell her four-piece matched set of Louis Vuitton luggage.
For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit http://www.forbes.com/sites/deborahljacobs/2013/08/23/12-personal-finance-lessons-broken-down-in-woody-allens-blue-jasmine/

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