What are some of the more common financial mistakes made in divorce settlements?
There are many financial pitfalls that one can fall into when crafting divorce settlements. Most typical are keeping the family home for emotional reasons, splitting assets without consideration of future tax consequences, making financial decisions one at a time without considering the bigger picture, not protecting future support payments, failing to consider joint liability for marital debts, not understanding how the timing of support payments may result in unanticipated tax consequences, not considering the long term impact of decisions, and failure to utilize a qualified domestic relations order to split 401k accounts. These are just some of the more common errors but there are many more that a divorce financial specialist is trained to avoid.
How can I protect our children from the harmful effects of divorce?
- Consider mediation or collaboration rather than litigation
- Focus on having fun with the kids rather than dwelling on the divorce or what they are seeing or hearing at your ex-spouse’s house
- Explore the possibility of having the kids see a mental health professional who specializes in children of divorce
- Make spending time on yourself a priority so that you can be your best with the kids
- Tell the children over and over and over again that the divorce is not their fault and that they are loved by both of their parents
How much will my divorce cost?
It depends on the process you choose, the nature of your attorney(s), the degree of cooperation between you and your spouse, how complicated your finances are, whether there are custody issues, and whether you utilize the services of a divorce coach (a divorce coach will help reduce your cost). Divorces can cost a few thousand dollars or over $100,000. You can’t control your spouse, but you can make choices yourself that may substantially reduce your total costs.
How does divorce coaching work?
The role of a coach is to help you work through the tougher times and make better choices before, during, and after your divorce. You’ll work together to identify and prioritize issues, break to-do lists into manageable pieces, find and effectively utilize additional resources, explore options, overcome obstacles, bring to bear your best qualities, take effective actions, and celebrate your victories, big and small.
The first step is to schedule a consultation with a coach to discuss your situation. If you think working together will be beneficial, you’ll meet as often as needed.
Why should I work with a divorce financial specialist when my lawyer says she can handle the financial issues?
While your lawyer may indeed have handled the financial side of divorce for his clients, she just doesn’t know what she doesn’t know. Lawyers are legal experts, not financial specialists. A Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA®) is specifically trained and experienced in the financial issues inherent in divorce, including valuing and dividing retirement plans, tax issues, cash flow analysis, asset valuation, risk management, and more. As with a divorce coach, most financial specialists will have a lower hourly rate than your lawyer’s and may also save you tens of thousands of dollars by avoiding costly mistakes and determining an optimal settlement that will serve you well into the future.
What should I use a divorce coach for?
- Whether to divorce
- Preparing to divorce
- Decisions about the process for divorce
- Parenting concerns
- Managing emotions
- Divorcing with dignity
- Reducing stress
- Clarifying decisions
- Prioritizing what needs to be done
- Dealing with conflict
- Communicating with your attorney, spouse, and others
- Effectively working with your lawyer and the court system
- Getting ready for court or mediation
- Career or job change
- Being stuck, not able to move on
- Getting financially organized
- Building confidence
- Financial concerns
What is the difference between coaching and therapy?
Psychotherapy is for evaluating, assessing, diagnosing, and treating emotional and mental disorders and dysfunctions. It is also often about exploring the past and how it impacts your current life. Coaching, on the other hand, is future-oriented, being your best self, and setting and meeting goals. In short, therapy is centered on uncovering and recovering, while coaching is focused on discovering and change.
What’s different about divorcing after 50?
There are many similarities in divorce no matter what the age. Splitting up in mid-life and beyond, though, has unique qualities and challenges. Women, especially, are sometimes forced to go back into a workplace that isn’t friendly to aging workers, may find themselves inadequately prepared for their future retirement. Many will fear growing old alone or have to leave the homes they have known for decades. Feelings of regret and resentment may seem overwhelming and insurmountable. For those over 50 it is even more important to work with a financial expert and get emotional support from a qualified coach.
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