The role of the neutral financial professional in the Collaborative Divorce Process is to be an educator/facilitator in matters relating to finance.
Neutral financial professionals are considered part of the collaborative practice team working together to achieve a mutually agreeable settlement. They provide a neutral place to assess financial concerns and objectives while gathering financial facts. The role of the Financial Specialist encompasses eight principal categories:
Gathering data such as identifying spending patterns, needs analysis, income history and potential, and asset and debt values, including investments, pensions and insurance.
- At Wellspring Divorce Advisors we believe obtaining documents and information directly from third parties to be the most efficient manner, both cost and time wise, of obtaining financial data. To that end we require clients to sign an authorization and consent form allowing us to go and get the information from account custodians, tax preparers, employers, etc.
Understanding and prioritizing client financial concerns and goals.
- Your Wellspring Divorce Advisors financial specialist will meet with each party to the dissolution in individual data gathering meetings where we will discuss financial goals and aspirations for the process and life beyond the divorce.
- We will help you uncover your interests, concerns and questions regarding financial picture so that they can all be addressed during the process.
- The meetings are done individually to allow each party a safe place to share their thoughts and concerns
Educating on concepts, addressing financial concerns, bringing spouse(s) up to speed and “leveling the playing field;”
- It is common in a marriage for one party to have paid bills while the other managed investments or one party to have managed all the family finances while the other managed the family.
- This is a natural result of a simple economic principle known as comparative advantage. Whoever is better suited ability or efficiency wise should be the person responsible for a task.
- Unfortunately this also results in one party being significantly disadvantaged when it comes to understanding the family financial picture.
- Your Wellspring Divorce Advisors financial neutral will help level the playing field by educating both parties and acting as a neutral depository of all financial information
Creative Options and Strategies to Help you Think Strategically
- Your neutral financial specialist will help you think strategically by assisting in brainstorming of creative options and strategies specific to the financial intricacies of your divorce
Cash Flow projections, including the impact of inflation and taxes;
- Your neutral financial analyst will help to prepare analysis of the marital standard of living by looking backwards into the family cash flow.
- Cash flow is king post-divorce so your financial specialist will help to prepare detailed current forward looking budgets for use in long term settlement analysis
Asset and Debt division scenarios, including the impact of taxes and comparative analysis of various options for settlement
- The financial professional’s role is to help the client’s understand the possible implications, both positive and negative, of the settlement scenarios. By laying out these possibilities, the financial professional provides information the clients need to make an informed decision for themselves.
Graphic illustrations showing short-term and long-term detailed financial estimates;
- Some people learn visually. Wellspring Divorce Advisors uses detailed and clear graphical representations in many circumstance to make sure the visual learner can stay engaged and allow easy access to key differences both short and long term when comparing settlement options
Assisting with implementation of various elements of the financial settlement;
- Your Wellspring Divorce Advisors neutral will not work with you long term as an investment advisor post-divorce but they can help to consummate the settlement you reach by assisting with asset transfers, title changes, QDRO drafting, etc..