If you are going through a divorce, you’re asking yourself
“How will I fare, financially, after the divorce is complete?”
The time to starting thinking about financial issues is not while you are in the middle or your divorce and definitely not after it is over. You’ll find yourself in a much stronger position, if you start addressing your financial concerns at the time you first consider separation or divorce.
Every divorce client has a unique financial circumstance; that's why I will take the time to understand your financial needs and how to best achieve your goals. I follow a step by step process to make sure your current needs during the divorce are met. Then create a plan to meet your financial goals and objective for post-divorce life. Click here for a list of financial documents you'll need to gather for a financial assessment.
In order to establish temporary maintenance, an Affidavit of Financial Information must be filed. One of the most common mistakes you can make is providing an incomplete summary of expenses and information that is not organized. Often, expenses get left out and then suddenly there is not enough money to cover living expenses. It is essential to create a comprehensive budget from the beginning. It will give you a sense of control and a better perspective about your future.
Both current and anticipated expenses which can be used for the preparation of the Affidavit of Financial Information (AFI), a document required by the Superior Court of Maricopa County upon filing divorce papers. A detailed cash flow statement is prepared to document both a historical expense analysis and future expense requirements.
Detailing income (all sources), potential tax implications, current and future expenses and Net Worth build up or decline over a period of time. In addition, at the request of your attorney we may examine various cash flow scenarios to demonstrate the impact of Spousal Maintenance.
A Net Worth Statement is an asset and liability analysis which details date, source and values of all marital, sole and separate, assets and liabilities. This sometimes uncovers assets or debts that were not known to you at the onset of the process. This information is also helpful when you are completing the Affidavit of Financial Information
One spouse gets the house, the other the retirement account. Sounds fair, doesn’t it? In a divorce, it is common for one spouse to receive liquid assets such as the retirement account and the other spouse to receive an illiquid asset such as a house. The problem is the house is a cash cow (mortgage, utilities, taxes, repairs) and in our current housing market it is an asset that is still depreciating. In addition, when a woman is given the house she may not be able to afford it down the road.
Other things that must be considered include; earning potential, career assets (job benefits including insurance, vacation, Social Security, stock options, and pensions), and personal investments in the marriage (the less-tangible choices or sacrifices made on behalf of the couple by one spouse, such as quitting a job or postponing education to take care of the children or to allow the other spouse to complete studies or advance a career). I will assist your attorney in creating a settlement based on a fair division of assets based on their true market worth.
I will analyze your settlement offer to determine whether it is equitable and workable. When determining whether the settlement is fair, I will consider maintenance needs, long-term cash flow and net worth and after-tax implications. If necessary, I will work with your attorney to develop alternate settlement proposals.
If your divorce goes to trial, I can testify on your behalf as to your future cash flow, net worth and spousal maintenance need.
Once you have received your divorce decree, there are still a few items that must be attended to right away. You must ensure that your new post-divorce status is reflected on all your important documents and that you’ve done everything required in your final divorce order.
I will provide you with a detailed checklist that includes;
After the divorce is over, you’ll find yourself wanting financial security, right after your financial world has been ripped apart. Post-divorce is a time to start planning ahead and re-building your financial security. Financial planning starts with knowing what you want.
Ask yourself these questions:
I offer a complimentary consultation to discuss your future needs. At this time, I can make recommendations to help you gather a new team of advisors (e.g. financial planner, accountant, estate planning attorney, etc.). A financial plan that is realistic and achievable can make the difference between a life of fear and vulnerability and one of empowerment and peace of mind.