Financial Planning in Family Law

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Sometimes our work as Family Lawyers is misunderstood and some clients want us to advise them about what assets they should take and how they should use those assets after they have separated.

As Family Lawyers, working in the area of relationship breakdown it is natural that people want us to provide that advice; unfortunately, we do not provide that advice as we are simply not able to legally, nor are we qualified to provide important financial planning advice about what happens after separation.

The Family Lawyer’s role is to provide advice to clients about what the law says concerning children, spousal maintenance/child support, and dividing up property in the event of a breakdown in the relationship. This advice may involve specific advice about percentage entitlements of each party in a property settlement and about how much money one party may pay the other.

However, that advice can never extent to recommending to a client what type of asset should they retain and how should they spend their money when they separate.

That is why we recommend all of our clients to seek appropriate advice from a qualified Financial Advisor at an early stage after their separation. In our experience, a good Financial Advisor will be able to assist our clients in moving on after separation and planning and answering many financial questions such as:-

  1. How much money will I have each month and how do I spend it?
  2. How much superannuation should I have?
  3. What should I do with the assets I have?
  4. What about retiring now? Because I have separated and we have divided our assets, when can I retire and what can I expect to live on in the future?

 
Often, separating couples have already had good financial advice but unfortunately that all changes drastically when one separates.

A good Family Lawyer will always educate their clients about the difference between the advice that they can give and the advice that is best given by other people such as Financial Advisors.

About the author

Brett Hartley

Accredited Family Law Specialist

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