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Divorce Services

Shawndi L. Purselley, CFP ®CDFATM


Please click here to jump to our "Divorce Planning Documents" page. 

Shawndi provides Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFATM) services such as;

  • Property division
  • Retirement plan division
  • Child support
  • Social security
  • Insurance
  • Debt, credit, and bankruptcy
  • Spousal support

Divorce-Related Articles (links)

What is a CDFA™?   

The role of the CDFA™ is to assist the client and his/her lawyer to understand how the financial decisions he/she makes today will impact the client’s financial future.

Divorce, Recession Style

The way that couples – and the professionals assisting them – are dealing with divorce has had to change dramatically to keep up with today’s financial realities.

Advice from a Judge

A Family Court Judge talks about effective preparation for court – and how to achieve results in court by utilizing all available resources.

Top Ten Divorce Tips

Certified Divorce Financial Analysts offer their tips to help you sidestep some common divorce-related problems.

Financial Health Check-up

Take this short quiz to find out whether you get a clean bill of financial health – or if you require emergency care.

Avoiding Common Divorce Pitfalls

Certified Divorce Financial Analysts™ offer their best tips to help you avoid some of the most common mistakes made by divorcing people.

Discovering your Financial Reality

Understanding your financial situation will give you a sense of control over your life – before, during, and after divorce.

Surviving Financially after Divorce

How to prepare yourself to deal with the financial realities of divorce.

Tips: Avoiding Financial Traps

Here are some tips to help you avoid some of the common financial pitfalls of divorce.

Negotiating your Future

When you’re negotiating your divorce settlement, preparation is the key to success. Are you really ready to negotiate your future?

Avoiding Financial Disaster

Here are some tips to help you avoid some of the common financial pitfalls of divorce.

Settlement and Separation Agreements

What you need to know before creating a settlement or separation agreement.

Making your Case for Spousal Support

Many states and provinces consider your marital standard of living and your pre-divorce lifestyle as major factors in awarding spousal support. Here’s how to make sure the financial documents you create will work for you and not against you.

Understanding Spousal Support

What you need to know right now about spousal support: in Canada and the United States.

Prenuptial Agreements and Marriage Contracts

If you’re thinking of taking the plunge for a second time, you should seriously consider having a prenuptial agreement or marriage contract in place before you walk down the aisle.

Protecting your Credit Score

Protecting your credit score during divorce.

Who Gets What? Dividing Property During Divorce

Divorce is a time of emotional stress. It can be difficult to decide which property is "yours," "mine,""ours," or "theirs." Here are some pointers.

What is a QDRO

A Domestic Relations Order that creates or recognizes the existence of an alternate payee’s rights to receive, or assigns to an alternate payee the right to receive all or a portion of the benefits payable with respect to a participant under a retirement plan.   QDRO’s are legal documents and should be prepared by or reviewed by an attorney. 

Health coverage

If you do not have your own insurance coverage and are covered by your spouse’s employer, you may be eligible for continued coverage under COBRA for up to 36 months. However, you must begin the process of applying for COBRA through your spouse’s employer within 60 days of your divorce.

Social Security

If you were married for at least 10 years, and remain single, you have the option to draw up to 50% of your former spouse’s eligible Social Security payment if it is larger than your own Social Security payment. You may also opt to draw from your ex’s Social Security at (your) full retirement age, and then switch to your own full payment at age 70. You may also be eligible for 100% of your former spouse’s social security benefit when he/she dies. 

Keeping the family home

When deciding whether or not to keep the house, consider the cost of maintenance, taxes, up-keep and other household expenses. Although you may be able to afford the mortgage, the other expenses may exceed your budget.

The amount of spousal support can depend on several factors such as: length of the marriage, earning potential, age, and child custody arrangements. Spousal support is usually tax deductible by the paying spouse and taxed as ordinary income to the receiving spouse.  

Gathering records

Make copies of all tax returns, loan applications, wills, trusts, financial statements, banking information, loan documents, credit card statements, deeds to real property, car registration, insurance inventories, and all insurance policies.

Copy records that you can use to trace your separate property, such as an inheritance or a gift from your family. These assets will remain yours as long as you can document them.

Don’t forget often overlooked assets. Frequent flyer miles, vacation and sick pay, season tickets, club memberships, timeshares, magazine subscriptions, and prepaid insurance all are assets that have value and should be split.

Failing to make copies ahead of time may require you to subpeona them later.  This will delay your divorce and stack up the cost of your divorce.

Get Educated

Hire an Attorney

Read a book or take a class on do-it-yourself divorce even if you plan to use an attorney or mediator.

Try mediation instead of litigation. Mediation is private, less expensive, and kinder to your children than litigation.

If mediation won’t work, consider arbitration. Arbitration is less expensive than court, but lets you "rent a judge", an impartial observer who may be able to help decide any issues remaining in your settlement.

Don’t forget often overlooked assets. Frequent flyer miles, vacation and sick pay, season tickets, club memberships, timeshares, magazine subscriptions, and prepaid insurance all are assets that have value and should be split.