Divorce is a major event for almost everyone who goes through the process. Whether a couple is just starting out financially, has experienced some tough times, or has extensive holdings, the process of asset division and separation of finances can be challenging and complicated. In many cases, engaging financial professionals alongside your divorce attorney can help you to build a team of experts who can assist you in emerging successfully from the divorce.
In many cases, a divorce is one of the single largest financial events in any person’s life. It can involve the sale and purchase of real estate, result in the division of retirement funds and even affect the distribution of closely held businesses. The longer the marriage and the greater the financial ties and resources shared between the spouses, the more complex and impactful the divorce becomes. In addition, even long after the emotional and personal aspects of the divorce have faded, the consequences of the financial decisions made during the divorce process and immediately after will linger for years to come.
When you consider divorcing, you will want to turn to a New Jersey family law attorney for advice and guidance throughout the process. Whether your divorce is litigated, negotiated with the assistance of your respective divorce lawyers or mediated through a professional, your family lawyer works with you to protect your interests and help you achieve a fair settlement. Working for a fair property division is important to make sure that your needs are met moving forward and helps to lay the groundwork for future financial success.
As you work with your divorce attorney through the New Jersey family court process as well as negotiations for a marital settlement agreement, you may also benefit from a broader professional team to advise you about the financial side of divorce. Your family law attorney will work to advocate for you in terms of alimony, child support, parenting time and other key divorce legal matters. They may also be able to recommend financial advisors and other professionals who can help you plan for your post-divorce life as well as experts to address financial issues during the divorce itself.
One of the first things to prepare when meeting with your divorce lawyer is an overall inventory of your finances and your financial documents. These include writing out your assets and liabilities, gathering your tax forms and income documents and assembling information about your retirement funds, investments, cryptocurrency wallets and other relevant accounts. You will be asked about your regular expenses as an individual and as a couple and the amount of money you will need to continue those expenses after a divorce.
Some people may have all of this information on hand, while others may need to do more research or seek advice to get a fuller picture of their current financial status. This information is key to going through the property division process and working to protect your interests.
There are multiple financial professionals that you can work with during your divorce, in many cases alongside your family lawyer. The complexity of the financial side of the divorce tends to increase with greater income and assets. When both parties have relatively little money and few assets, they may not own a marital home and may also have few conflicts about how to divide up their property. However, business owners, investors, executives and other professionals may be likely to have complex negotiations regarding the financial distribution that accompanies a divorce settlement.
Some of the experts and advisors you may work with during the divorce include the following:
There are some major financial questions to consider during a divorce. Whether you are litigating in court or going through negotiations or mediation, you will still need to conduct a complete financial review. Parents, in particular, may need to pay attention to the financial consequences of divorce in order to ensure that they have the funds they need to prepare for their children’s future and minimize the effects of the divorce on their lives. When planning future expenses, it is important for both parents to take the children’s needs into account in order to prevent a future crisis.
It is also important to consider the needs of your specific children, including medical costs, tutoring bills, special school programs, travel sports and other unique expenses for each child. Both parents may also reach a divorce settlement that includes mandatory life insurance paid to the benefit of the child or a trust set up in their interests.
For many people choosing to divorce, the decision of how to handle the marital home can be a major challenge. The best emotional choice may not always be the best financial one. If one spouse chooses to keep the home, they may need to refinance the home into a mortgage in their name alone and buy out the other spouse. A financial advisor can help both parties to decide the best course of action for future financial security. If the couple decides to sell the home and split the proceeds, financial experts can also provide key advice about the real estate market, potential tax consequences and other concerns that could affect the final decision.
Your New Jersey divorce attorney can work with other financial professionals to help achieve a fair outcome during the asset distribution process. Contact New Jersey family law attorneys with experience in divorce finances at Lawrence Law by calling 908-645-1000 or by submitting our online form for a consultation at our Red Bank or Watchung office.