As noted in my initial blog about collaborative law, one distinction of a Collaborative Divorce from a tradition adversarial divorce is the role of agreed neutral third parties to assist the parties reach a resolution. One member of the team is the financial neutral. In a collaborative divorce, the parties agree to a financial neutral, typically a financial analyst or accountant who has been certified as a Divorce Financial Analyst. Unlike adversarial divorces where each party may have a financial advisor, the parties agree to use one financial expert.
The financial neutral has had collaborative law and mediation training and ideally experience with advising couples going through a divorce. The financial neutral is responsible for working with the parties and attorneys in gathering the documentation and information necessary to make an evaluation of the marital estate.
After the financial neutral has gathered the information, a report is made to the team and each side is allowed to question and request clarification or additional information. Once each side is comfortable with the financial report, then settlement conferences may be scheduled.
The financial neutral is available to meet with each party and his or her attorney prior to team meetings. During the team meetings, the financial neutral can advise on financial issues and ramifications of certain decisions. The financial neutral can also seek out other financial experts if needed for tax issues or business evaluations.
If a financial neutral assisting you through your divorce, sounds like something that would work for you, please contact us for more information about collaborative law divorces.
To schedule a case assessment with Melanie Hogg or another Held Law Firm attorney, call 865-685-4780.