As a freelancer, your income comes from the work you perform. You pay out your own taxes and have no “boss” to speak of. You have clients and have to make time for as many projects as you can fit into your busy schedule.

Unlike those who work 9-to-5 jobs, if you miss a day, you don’t get paid. Freelance positions have a lot of freedom but also come with risks. If you end up having to get a divorce, your livelihood could be at risk.

Why is your work at risk during divorce?

The first reason comes down to time. If you’re spending all your time fighting and negotiating with your spouse, you’re not spending that time on work. That directly impacts your income. Comparatively, if your spouse misses a day or two from a traditional job, he or she may have paid time off.

Another thing to remember is that your work could suffer if you’re stressed during your divorce. Not being able to focus makes it harder to complete projects. Depending on the type of work you do, getting distracted could put you or others in danger or put you at risk of losing the job.

What should you do?

Make a plan early on. Devote certain time slots to your work and others to the divorce and things you have to get done. Take the time to close shared accounts to make sure your to-be-ex-partner can’t dip into the funds you have coming in.

It should also go without saying that you need to get refocused on your work. Keep your divorce as separate as possible. If you need time off, be reasonable with your requests and keep to your clients’ major deadlines.

These are a few tips to help you protect your freelancing business during divorce. Be patient, and you will get through this difficult time.