Navigating the Complexities Presented by Self-Employed Spouses in Divorce Mediation

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Divorce with self-employed spouses gives rise to several layers of complexities for the divorce process and the professionals involved. The process must be managed carefully to ensure that the true value of the business is discovered (even in a personal services business) and that all sources of income available to the self-employed spouse are identified. If there is an "out-spouse", an attorney-mediator may need to spend more time explaining these financial intricacies to them, while still holding strong in their role as a neutral.

This course, presented by Lani Baron of Alternative Divorce Solutions, will explain the process of selecting an expert to assist in the divorce mediation process, when to include them, how to set expectations with the clients, and how to ensure that both parties have the full scope of information necessary to make informed choices in their divorce. This course will also cover the role of an independent, consulting attorney in these cases. 

Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify when a forensic accountant/business valuation expert is needed as part of the divorce mediation process (or the divorce process in general)

  2. Discuss how to select an expert and manage their introduction into the process, while abiding by the ethical rules regarding confidentiality and neutrality

  3. Learn how to focus on the "out-spouse" to ensure the proper transfer of information is made without compromising neutrality 

  4. Address how to work in conjunction with the parties and the forensic accountant/business valuation expert to ensure that the report prepared on the clients' behalf is properly explained and discrepancies are identified and addressed

  5. Assist the parties in reaching an agreement once the information playing field has been equalized 

  6. Determine where the funds for a buy-out would come from and/or how to structure installment payments (and secure them)

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