It’s time! Now what and how? I didn’t anticipate what you might call brain fog around the division of my marital estate. I’d worked in personal finance since 1998 and knew my financial world as well as possible. The peace-of-mind I received from having guidance from a clear-headed, unemotional, mentally available, experienced team is the best gift I’ve probably ever given myself.
Divorce is likely an event with which you do not have much or any hands-on experience. This process is one that has options that differ in each state. Counties and courts will even have their individual requirements. Working with a respectful team doesn’t take all of the emotion out of your divorce. It can, however arm you with education, knowledge, and forward looking counsel to help ease the fear, hurt, anger, regret, guilt or whatever emotions with which you will personally struggle.
Begin building the team who will assist you through this life changing transition. Carefully envision your post divorce life and the relationship you hope to have with finances, family, and friends. Try not to work on this from a place of anger but of hope and grace. Now, meet with one to three local advisors who specialize in divorce. Find someone who listens and treats you with respect. The advisor you choose will help you build the rest of your team.
It is more common than not for one spouse to handle the finances and the other to manage the home. This often means that spouses will have questions, at a minimum, about either:
1. the money and how they will have a successful financial future; or
2. the children and the intricacies surrounding the new path for the family.
How can we make informed-decisions on topics about which we have little to no experience? This is where your team will work with you both to identify opportunities for compromise and offer viable options based in your reality while considering your own post divorce hopes. One goal of a collaborative divorce team is that the spouses feel like they each have an understanding of the different aspects of their divorce to allow them to individually make good, solid, informed decisions for their future.
Divorce is a process that, when done in the spouses’ and families’ best interest, often takes some time as well as effort, not to mention a good support system. Your balanced team will provide a much needed gravity check when you are knocked off balance through the twists and turns of your divorce. The satisfaction of knowing that you understood the benefits, risks, limitations, and/or alternatives for the choices you made will likely be an enormous aid in beginning your future with some self-assurance and tranquility.
First step – find the support network and team that makes you feel empowered and positive. Read through the bios of the collaborative divorce professionals in your area if you haven’t already selected your first team member. Interview one to three local lawyers who specialize in family law to make sure you’re comfortable with your choice. This individual is often the first member of the team and will provide referrals for your other advisors.
Advisory services offered through Per Stirling Capital Management, LLC. This material is provided for informational purposes only. Individual advice should be provided by the appropriate tax, legal, financial or accounting professional.