Divorce Planning in New York 101

Divorce planning in New York is a proactive approach to the process that seeks to help a spouse who is planning to file for divorce or who has a feeling that his or her spouse is about to file to protect his or her own legal and financial interests.  Divorce planning in New York allows a spouse to become more knowledgeable about his or her current financial position and to enter the divorce from a point of clarity.  It usually consists of the following process:

Gathering of Documents

Your divorce attorney needs certain information to create pleadings or respond to them.  This includes biographical data, such as dates of birth and social security numbers for you and your spouse.  You also need your marriage certificate and details regarding your marriage ceremony.  Gather all pertinent financial records, including:

  • Statements for all financial accounts
  • Deeds, mortgage documents and valuation documents for any real property owned
  • Any marital agreement
  • Tax returns for at least the last three years

Provide these documents to your divorce attorney or another trusted individual.

Making an Inventory of Assets

Start cataloging your separate and marital property.  Sometimes, property has a way of “disappearing” during the divorce process.  Take pictures of assets worth any significant value and make a list of the property that you own.

Contacting Professionals

In order to receive personalized advice, it is important that you meet with professionals whose services you may soon need.  Talk to a counselor to handle the emotional impact of divorce.  Consider consulting with an accountant, financial adviser or tax specialist if you have financial questions.  Interview divorce lawyers so that you are all lined up when the point comes.