Why Not Wait on the Pandemic to Divorce!

Stephanie Vokral |

Lately, I’ve had some people say to me that they are waiting to move forward with their divorce because of the economic situation and pandemic. You may even be asking yourself if it makes sense to launch a new business or career in the middle of a pandemic. If this is the situation you are contemplating, my suggestion is that you use this time to gather all the financial data you will need to present your case to your spouse. This requires gathering multiple documents. I have put together a list below, but your situation may not warrant all of these documents. If you find yourself not knowing what some of these documents are, you are not alone. Sometimes it requires going to your attorney, CPA, or your spouse to find these documents. Before you run to your spouse, you may want to find out from a professional if it makes sense at this point in your situation to let them know you were gathering documents. This may be something you need to do privately. If your situation is not amicable, you may need to look in your home office or other places you think your spouse may have these documents. You need to be your own detective! Many people find themselves in this situation and we can help.

 The longer you wait, the further you are from realizing your new career and new life. This could be time you use not only gathering documents, but also developing a business plan and/or personal financial plan to move forward. Would you take a trip without your GPS or a map? Why would you embark on the rest of your life’s journey without this as well? A business plan and/or financial plan are your roadmap to your financial future. It is not the role of your CPA or attorney in divorce to help you understand this.

 Whether or not you know what these documents are, they are still what is needed by the professionals helping you through this divorce. It may feel easier to put your head in the sand and not think about it right now, but more time will make splitting assets more difficult. The longer you wait, the harder and more costly it could be as this is the nature of valuing assets in divorce. Don’t wait! Use this time wisely. Give us a call today for a free consultation.

 

INCOME AND TAX RETURNS 

  • Payroll stubs
  • Tax returns (last 3 Years)
  • W-2’s and 1099s (last 3 Years)
  • Partnership or Corporate tax returns (last 3 years), if business owner
  • Amended returns (last 3 Years)

CHECKING AND SAVINGS ACCOUNTS

  • Checking account Statements
  • Savings account Statements
  • Business account Statements

INVESTMENTS AND OTHER ASSETS 

  • HSA account Statements
  • Employer retirement plans (Pensions, Profit sharing, 401(k), 403(b), 457, & Non- Qualified Deferred Compensation Plans) Statements
  • Summary Plan Description
  • Pensions Statements
  • Benefit estimates (from employer website; monthly benefit estimates)
  • Benefits Booklet from employer
  • IRA, Roth IRA, Simple IRA, SEP IRA Statements
  • Social Security Statements – most recent – available at www.ssa.gov 
  • Stock Options or Grants Statements
  • Life Insurance Policies (Work and Personal) Statement
  • Investment Statements (mutual funds, stocks and bonds, brokerage investment accounts, annuities, money markets, CDs etc.)
  • Real Estate information (Personal & vacation/investment property)
  • Children’s Bank, Savings, College savings, Insurance and Investment Statements

DEBTS 

  • Mortgages (on all homes & rental properties) Statements
  • Second Mortgage or HELOC Statements
  • Credit card Statements
  • Student loan Statements  
  • Personal loan Statements
  • Car loan Statements
  • KBB or Carfax valuation by VIN# for your car if it is owned – not leased
  • Business loan Statements
  • Credit Report for each party