As a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®), Damon is routinely involved in assisting clients with issues related to cash flow, risk evaluation, investments, taxes, retirement planning, and estate planning. Damon can specifically help individuals understand and evaluate the short and long term consequences of different property settlement options during divorce. The ability to work with Damon will help prevent common financial mistakes made by many divorcing couples. Damon can also serve as an expert witness in court and helps to provide valuable financial information during mediation as necessary. Damon also has the expertise and training to help you with the financial issues of your divorce as a neutral expert as part of your Collaborative Law Team. The financial issues inherent to every divorce case are often times the ones that are the most overlooked. However, once a divorce settlement has been signed, it's too late to change it. Damon has the experience and expertise to help you during the divorce process, and to help you avoid those costly financial mistakes.
How can a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) help me?
They provide valuable information on financial issues that are related to the divorce, such as tax consequences, dividing pension plans, dividing retirement plans, continued health care coverage, stock option elections and much more. When a CDFA is used during the Inventory and Appraisement stage of your divorce, you have an expert looking at your finances that can spot problems and advantages from the start of your case. This will save you time and money down the road. A CDFA will help you understand your proposed divorce settlement, and will communicate with you in terms that you can understand. Since a qualified specialist is working on the financial issues in your divorce, this will leave more time for you and your attorney to focus on the legal issues you may have.
Should a person hire a CDFA™ instead of an attorney?
Definitely not! It is highly recommend that any person getting a divorce seek legal counsel. The CDFA™’s role is to assist the attorney and the client with the financial issues, not replace the attorney.
Do CDFA™’s help only men or only women?
CDFA™’s are trained to advocate for men and women. The CDFA™ simply interprets the numbers and helps the attorney and client.
Can CDFA™’s act as a neutral party to help a couple reach a financial settlement?
Yes, it is common to have a CDFA™ take a role in facilitative mediation and collaborative law. However, CDFA™’s are not attorneys and cannot give out legal advice. It is always recommend that any person going through a divorce receive independent legal advice.
Top Five Reasons for Hiring a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst®
During the Divorce Process
1) Financial analysis conducted early in the divorce process can save time.
The average length of the U.S. divorce process is one year. In the beginning stages of the process, both parties spend a great deal of time trying to get a clear understanding of the financial aspects and terminology of the separation. A Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® (CDFA™) professional can explain all financial aspects of the pending decisions and help to empower their client to make educated decisions throughout the proceedings.
2) A CDFA can help their client save money during the divorce process.
By using a CDFA professional, you can have a clearer view of your financial future. Only then can you approach a legal settlement that fully addresses your financial needs and capabilities. A legal settlement that floats back and forth between attorneys, without the client having a clear understanding of all financial ramifications, can be detrimental, time consuming and expensive. CDFA professional's can educate their clients by providing a thorough knowledge and understanding of the often-complicated financial decisions.
3) A CDFA can help his/her clients to avoid long-term financial pitfalls related to divorce agreements.
Working with a client and their attorney, a CDFA professional can forecast the long-term effects of the divorce settlement. This includes details of all tax liabilities and benefits. Developing a long-term forecast for their financial situation is far better than a short-term snapshot. Financial decisions must be made that not only take care of immediate family needs, but retirement needs as well.
4) CDFA professional's can assist their clients with developing detailed household budgets to help avoid post-divorce financial struggles.
A CDFA professional can help clients think through what the divorce will really cost in the long run and develop a realistic monthly budget during the financial analysis process. Expenses such as life insurance, health insurance and cost of living increases must be taken into consideration when agreeing on a final financial settlement.
5) Using a CDFA professional can reduce the amount of apprehension and misunderstanding about the divorce process.
Misinformation and misconceptions about the divorce process can be detrimental. Many have false expectations that they will be able to secure a divorce settlement allowing them to continue with their accustomed style of living. Financial divorce analysis helps to ensure a good, stable economic future and prevent long-term regret with financial decisions made during the divorce process.
Copyright © 2019 Damon J. Wykrent, CFP®, CDFA™, CFE - All Rights reserved.