Going through divorce is stressful for all involved. Financial concerns and uncertainty only add to that stress. Financial planning for divorce can get complicated, and requires specialized training and knowledge. Luba Globerman, CFP(r) of Financial Pathways has undergone such training and been recognized by the Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts as a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA).
When you think about it, divorce is primarily about two things. Money, and kids. And with kids, its about custody and financial support. So at least 75% of divorce is about money. Yet, oftentimes neither the attorney nor client has the detailed financial knowledge needed to ensure that a proposed divorce settlement provides the ideal balance of adequate current cash flow and long term security, for adults and children alike.
Pre Divorce Planning.
We think it makes sense to sit down with us before you ever see an attorney. We can do a preliminary financial analysis letting you know what you can realistically expect your financial life to look like once a settlement has been finalized. Having a clear financial view of your life after the divorce is critically important to receiving a fair and adequate settlement!
Where will you live? What will it cost? What are goals for the kids? Where will the money come from? If alimony and child support will be involved, how secure, stable, and reliable is the income that backs those payments? What will an ideal settlement, fair to BOTH SIDES look like? Answering these questions not only helps ensure a fair settlement, but visualizing a successful post divorce financial life can help relieve stress as well!
We can also help you consider the relative merits of mediation vs. litigation, and prepare you for the negotiations that lie ahead. Being financially well organized and prepared before you begin the process will help you avoid common pitfalls and can potentially reduce legal costs and fees. You do not want to pay the going hourly rate for your attorney to help you organize and understand your finances!
Throughout the Process.
Things can get very complicated and stressful during the negotiating process. Your attorney means the best for you, but he or she is not a personal finance specialist. As proposals are put forth and considered, let us watch out for your financial best interests. We can work directly with your attorney or mediators as your advocate if you wish (this is often the most efficient approach), or can simply help prepare and coach you along the way. As your financial advocate, protecting your financial interests throughout the process is our only mission!
Starting Your New Life.
Hopefully we have already laid the groundwork by establishing a post-divorce budget and plan – but many clients only come to us after the divorce has been settled as they try to adjust to their new financial situation. We can help plan a budget for your new life, create a retirement or college plan, help with investment decisions, and otherwise help you get up and moving along your new Financial Pathway.
On reaching a fair settlement. We understand that there are usually hard feelings during this process. And it is not unusual for one side or the other to make unreasonable demands. Still, our focus is on helping our clients see what is FAIR to both sides. Why is fair important? Because “bleeding your ex dry” is a recipe for excessive litigation expense, on both sides. And both you and your soon to be ex ultimately suffer the depletion of assets which must be used to pay for excess litigation. Ultimately the court will insist that a settlement be fair anyway, so the faster you get there, the more there will be to go around!
Divorce and College Planning. Our very own James Kinney, CFP® is also a Certified College Planning Specialist, a discipline that often comes in handy as splitting couples devise a plan to pay for the kids education. Note: custody arrangements can have a substantial impact upon financial aid eligibility, which should be a consideration if you have children approaching college age.
Want to Learn More? Give us a call or drop us a line to setup a convenient appointment (by phone or in person). Let us show you how having your personal divorce financial advocate can help expedite a fair and equitable divorce settlement, reduce overall cost, and help you emerge from this ordeal into a bright and secure financial future.
Luba Globerman is a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst and a Certified Financial Planner™. Financial Pathway Advisors is a Registered Investment Advisor registered with the State of New Jersey Division of Banking and Securities.