Pre-Divorce: Be Prepared

I am Thinking of Getting a Divorce.
Where Should I Start?


You should begin by surrounding yourself with the professionals who can guide you through the divorce process. At a minimum, you will need a practicing family law attorney and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst™ (CDFA™) who is trained as a Certified Financial Planner®.

Before meeting with your CDFA™ and family law attorney, it is highly recommended that you gather information regarding your income and expenses, and your assets and liabilities. You will need to bring to this information to the initial meeting if available.  

These documents would include:

  • Ownership of real estate, car, boat, and other assets and their present value if known
  • Real estate property-home, vacation and investment
    • Purchase price
    • Date purchased
    • Source of down payment
  • Mortgage details: loan terms interest rate, length of mortgage and mortgage balance
  • Retirement account statements: IRA, 401K, 403B,
    459, Pension
  • 6 months of bank, savings and non-retirement investment account statements

It is recommended to detail your income and expenses for the CDFA™ and the divorce attorney. You should include any income including:

  • Work Related: W-2 and 1099
  • Investment:  interest and dividend income
  • Other income sources:
    • Social Security
    • Pension payments
    • Unemployment insurance benefits
    • Spousal or child support paid to you from a prior relationship

Your expenses should include items such as:

  • Housing: mortgage or rent payment
  • Utilities
  • Childcare
  • Entertainment
  • Auto loan or lease payments
  • Insurance: Health, Life, Disability, Auto
  • Medical (not reimbursed by your insurance carrier)
  • Other significant monthly expenses

A comprehensive list will be provided to you by your CDFA™.  This information will be valuable in supporting your position and useful in documenting and submitting your financial affidavit required by the courts.