CDFA® Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What is a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA®)?
    A Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) provides finance and accounting expertise, insights and analysis necessary in the creation of a comprehensive divorce strategy. As a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, Jon LaVine plays a key role in working with your attorney to help shape the divorce strategy and assist you in answering your questions. This collaboration is a necessary part of the divorce process.
  2. When should I hire a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst or divorce attorney first?
    The counsel of a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) should be enlisted as early in the divorce process as possible.

    As a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, Jon plays a key role in providing financial guidance that is required to secure the best possible outcome. It is important to obtain a thorough financial assessment of your situation prior to starting the divorce process.

    Crafting a divorce financial strategy involves a review and analysis of cashflow needs to support current and post-divorce lifestyle and living expenses, division of assets, and the impact of taxes and write-offs, and other important financial factors.
  3. Why is it important to have a Divorce Financial Strategy (Financial Assessment and Strategy)?
    No matter how cooperative a divorce may appear to be at the onset, being prepared with a comprehensive view of your finances and options is just good business. Anything less is highly risky. While divorce attorneys are legal experts who represent their client in divorce legal matters, a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) is a finance and accounting professional who deals with financial aspects of the divorce including taxes, asset allocation and cashflow.

    As a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, Jon plays a key role in providing financial guidance that is required to secure the best possible outcome. It is important to obtain a thorough financial assessment of your situation prior to starting the divorce process. Crafting a divorce financial strategy involves a review and analysis of cashflow needs to support current and post-divorce lifestyle and living expenses, division of assets, and the impact of taxes and write-offs, and other important financial factors.
  4. What do I do if I have started the divorce process with my divorce attorney?
    The counsel of a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) should be enlisted as early in the divorce process as possible. The needs to support current and post-divorce lifestyle and living expenses, division of assets, and the impact of taxes and write-offs, and other important financial factors should be carefully analyzed by someone who has been trained and certified in this specific area of finance. If you have started the divorce process with your attorney, an in-person meeting with Jon Lavine, CDFA, at your earliest convenience is recommended.
  5. What does it cost to create a Divorce Financial Assessment and Strategy?
    The cost to conduct a thorough review and analysis of your finances and particular situation is determined by the scope of your assets, liabilities, cashflow financial needs and unique considerations any aspects of the divorce. Because each divorce can range in scope and complexity it is recommended to schedule a time to meet in-person to discuss your case.
  6. How soon should I start on creating a Divorce Financial Assessment and Strategy?
    Immediately. Don’t get too far down the road with respect to the divorce process. Once discussions about assets, financial needs and other financial obligations are had with your spouse, and especially their attorney, expectations are created.

    Once a starting position in a negotiation are made, it is difficult to start again, event in light of new insights and realizations that are brought to light when you see things through the eyes and expertise of the Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA).

    Enlist the expertise of a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) as soon as possible. The earlier, the better information that you’ll have to help make decisions.
  7. What are the best ways to confidentially gather financial information?
    Once you retain Jon as your Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA), you will need to start gathering financial records and documents. We will provide you a complete list of records and information you will need to complete this first step in the process.

    This first step can be cumbersome however, the more thorough that you can be in gathering this information, the more complete and potentially stronger your case will be. It’s an important step in the process that you must go through.

    Ideally, your spouse will also be cooperative in providing you the documents, forms and information that you require. You can also work with your financial institutions, brokers, lien holders, Certified Public Accountant (CPA), financial advisors and creditors to provide you the needed documents, returns, forms and information.
  8. How long does the process take to create Financial Assessment and Strategy?
    The process to conduct a thorough review and analysis of your finances, as well as your particular situation often depends on the time it takes to gather financial information. Additionally, the scope and complexities of your assets and liabilities can impact the time to complete the assessment and strategy for your case. Whatever the process takes, we’ll be there for you and keep the process moving along.
  9. What is the process of creating a financial strategy for a divorce?
    Although divorces cases are unique in their conditions, Jon LaVine brings a disciplined, step-wise approach to divorce financial analysis and strategy development. Those steps include:
    • Initial discovery meeting to understand case and desired outcomes
    • Information gathering using a checklist document
    • Evaluate assets, liabilities and tax implications
    • Meeting to discuss recommended strategy and approach
    • Preparation of reports and ‘what if’ scenarios
    • Development of strategy and prepare back-up plan/strategy

To schedule an consultation, contact Jon LaVine at (949) 367-1935 x103 or by email, jon@lavine-cpas.com

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LaVine & Associates CPAs, Inc.

25201 Paseo de Alicia,
Suite 120
Laguna Hills, CA 92653

Tel: 949.367.1935

Fax:  949.367.1936
Email: jcovert@lavine-cpas.com

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