As discussed in Part 1, a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) will provide comprehensive guidance regarding the financial matters involved when a marriage is dissolved. An experienced CDFA will also know how the work of a divorce attorney can play a great part in the financial outcome of a divorce settlement. Part 2 will continue by discussing several factors to consider before making the final choice of a divorce attorney.
Contact with your divorce attorney will be on a daily or weekly basis during the beginning period of divorce negotiations. The majority of lawyers will give you a free or discounted initial consultation. In this first meeting, the divorce attorney will not provide your substantive legal advice, but instead will attempt to obtain a better understanding of your situation. Make note of your answers to the questions regarding your initial consultation below.
- Are you comfortable with the lawyer’s main method of communication (e-mail, meeting or phone)?
- Did the attorney provide satisfactory answers to the questions you prepared?
- Did the lawyer have an understanding of your needs?
- Were you comfortable discussing personal details with the attorney?
- Does the attorney typically obtain a negotiated settlement or move for litigation?
How comfortable the attorney made you feel will be crucial because your working relationship will last over a significant period, sometimes long after the divorce agreement is signed. There are instances when future legal assistance may be needed for enforcement or litigation.
The separation of assets may be challenging in some aspects and require a lawyer’s help. For example, complex investments in securities will need more work to liquidate. A retirement plan administrator must review a QDRO (qualified domestic relations order) prior to the division of retirement accounts. In unfortunate cases where a party attempts to create unnecessary delays, an experienced and skilled divorce attorney will be able to help prevent this tactic.
Part 3 will finish this article by discussing several other factors to consider before making the final choice of a divorce attorney.
Professional Guidance for Divorcing Individuals
John Faggio, CPA, CFP®, CDFA™, is a Financial Divorce Specialist. Faggio Financial helps divorcing individuals reach an equitable financial settlement in a professional, cost-effective, and expedient manner.
Faggio Financial does this by providing clients with financial clarity to a process that is inherently burdened with emotional issues and the stressors associated with the legal environment in which it exists. Call (410) 988-7333 for professional guidance today.