Ending a marriage is a painful prospect for most couples but it becomes even more complicated for those with extensive financial assets. Enter the certified divorce financial analyst to simplify matters.
The Springfield (MO) News-Leaders reported that more and more couples, especially those who own businesses together, are seeking the services of CDFAs to help them navigate the often-tricky path to divorce.
The certification is offered by the Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts, which was founded in 1993. Client services manager Shar Lockley, told the News-Leader the organization has certified about 1,600 analysts nationwide.
The assistance of CDFAs is recommended for divorcing couples that must deal with a complex maze of financial matters before their divorce can be settled.
William W. Miller Jr., a certified public accountant with Kirkpatrick, Phillips & Miller of Springfield, has helped divorcing clients with their finances for years but saw a need for a CDFA's help.
"I'm divorced, so I went through it myself," Miller told the News-Leader. "You get a different perspective when you've been through it yourself."
Miller said his divorce, which was final a year ago, took nearly two years to finish and believes that time could have been lessened with the help of a CDFA.
"This training tries to emphasize that the more both people know about their financial affairs, the faster the process can go," Miller said.
Lisha Masters, a Springfield-area divorce attorney who is also a CDFA, said too often in the past couples have focused on splitting assets down the middle, rather than looking at the long-term needs of both parties.
"You need to make sure they have what they need going forward" for financial security, she said. "You have to look at what they're getting for the long term rather than just the net value."
To find out more about CDFAs, go to Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts