How is a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst™
different than any other financial professional?
A Certified Divorce Financial Analyst™ is a financial professional who specializes in divorce financial issues. We must pass a rigorous exam to receive board certification and complete 20 hours of continuing education courses every two years. Our clients benefit from a depth of expertise coordinated efficiently among divorce team members to produce satisfaction with the legal process. We provide expert financial analysis and strategy but take care to tailor it within the legal environment.
As a CDFA™, I will collaborate with you, as I work closely with your client. At times I have been asked to coordinate, interpret and even lead the efforts of other divorce-related professionals with the goal of formulating coherent and consistent financial fact gathering. Whether I deal with financially complex cases, assist with ambiguous or incomplete financial facts, help manage a client’s unrealistic expectations, or bring creative solutions to problems, I will become part of the process and part of the solution.
My goal is to:
Many attorneys are reluctant to introduce us into the divorce because of perceived cost, duplication of services, or the belief that only divorces with significant assets justify the use of financial experts. In fact, our services supplement the attorney’s efforts and seamlessly enhance the divorce process and outcome for the client. I perform work in a way that enhances current decision-making on the part of the client by making it more powerful and enabling the client to project for his or her own future. The future is not territory typically covered by most attorneys or any other divorce-related financial professionals. CDFA™ have a unique role to play in the divorce process and the post-divorce outcome.
More than 90% of attorneys wait until the settlement process to add a CDFA™ to the team. In reality, if I am brought into the process sooner, the client can actively participate in making sound financial decisions that affect them for the rest of their lives. They will view the legal process with a much higher level of satisfaction. It is also in our clients’ best interest if I can help them;
I can and should play a crucial role in guiding the client toward rational decisions and successful negotiations.
During divorce, I am experienced to recognize what the wage earner or business owner is receiving: an income stream or asset. I either perform an income reconciliation to determine historical lifestyle and future support capacity, or I value the asset for equitable distribution purposes. I will bring together all of the tangible and intangible benefits (such as retirement, deferred compensation) to accurately portray what value they are to the client now, and upon disability, termination, retirement, or death. I also educate the client in a way that leads to confident resolution of financial issues. I perform my work in a way that enhances current decision-making on the part of the client by making it more powerful and enabling the client to project for his or her own future.