splitting assets during collaborative divorce
Written by Michelle N. Ogborne

Splitting Assets Inside Collaborative Divorce

You and your spouse have chosen to move your marriage toward divorce. Divorce might be the hard choice, but there’s now so much more to think about as you go through the proceedings. After all, your lives have been synonymous with each other’s for years, decades, maybe.

Sudden you’re talking about how to split time with children, assets, and debts.

Consider What You Have—and Have Not

Arizona is a community property state, what’s yours is theirs—and vice versa. Their definition of property includes everything, and we mean everything. Bank accounts, retirement accounts, investments, homes, vehicles, and even your business. It’s all considered to belong to both of you in the result of a divorce.

The good news is that assets you had before the marriage are likely to remain yours. If you started the business before you married, then it’s yours. Any profit and revenue accrued during your marriage will be included in the divorce.

Of course, what you owe together remains the responsibility of both of you. All mortgages, loans, and credit cards included. The only thing you get to keep that’s only yours is your student loan. According to family law, you split even the debts you accrued on your own during the marriage.

It’s important to keep in mind, even if your soon-to-be-ex doesn’t pay on a debt assigned to them, and your name is on it, then you’re responsible. You’d have to return to family court to get it sorted out.

Splitting Assets Inside Collaborative Divorce

A collaborative divorce allows the couple to work together to reach an amicable division of assets and debts. The process is built to help divorcing couples resolve disputes with honesty and mutual respect.

The collaborative divorce process allows for lots of support and provides a more open environment in which to share. The team involved in the process includes attorneys, mental health counselors, a child specialist, and a CDFA. (Certified Divorce Financial Analyst)

The CDFA is not only either a CPA or a CFP, but they also understand all the financial intricacies involved in a divorce. Their goal is to create two financially stable co-parenting environments. This often leads to improved communication between the parents, even after the final process of the divorce.

“I was worried about how it would work when Jane and I got divorced,” shared Tim, a 45-year-old business owner who recently separated from his wife of 15 years. The two have a nine-year-old son, Jacob. Tim continued, “Jane helped launch the business, and we worked in it together. Since we chose a collaborative divorce, we were more focused on Jacob’s well being. And were more proactive in how our financial lives would work once we divorced. With the help of our team, we realized we could successfully be divorced co-parents and work in the business together. It made the entire process easier for our family and the business.”

If you are going through a divorce and worried about how the split will affect your finances (and your children), consider collaborative divorce. Ogborne Law is committed to transforming divorce in Phoenix by helping families find collaborative divorce.