Hello, I am Deleta Grandy, and I am an associate with the Feldstein Family Law Group.
Today, I’m going to talk to you about Financial Statements. As Financial Statements form a major component of the family law litigation process, I’ll be breaking this topic down into two parts. Today will be Part 1: What is a Financial Statement?
Financial Statements are a very important part of the family law litigation process, and you will need to complete one if your family law matter involves child support, spousal support or property division. If you have looked at a Financial Statement before, it can be intimidating, but once you understand the purpose and the format of a financial statement, you won’t find it so daunting.
Before completing your Financial Statement, you first have to determine which version of the form to complete. You should complete a Form 13 if your family law matter involves a claim for either child support or spousal support, or both. If you are making a claim regarding any property issues, then you need to complete a Form 13.1.
What is a Financial Statement?
The Financial Statement is a court form that serves multiple purposes.
First, it confirms your source or sources of income, and how much income you make. This is Part 1: Income of the Financial Statement.
Second, it shows what you spend that income on, and whether you have some money left over every month, or whether you are spending more than you make. This is Part 2: Expenses. If there are special or extraordinary expenses for the children, you will also need to complete Schedule B of the Financial Statement.
Third, the Financial Statement shows if you are living with anyone who is helping you pay your bills. This is Part 3 of the Financial Statement, which only applies in cases of undue hardship or spousal support.
Fourth, the Financial Statement shows the value of all of your assets. In the case of a Form 13, which involves support issues only, only your current assets will be included in the Financial Statement. On a Form 13.1, you will need to include the values for your assets on three important dates:
- Your date of marriage;
- The date you separated from your spouse (this is also known as valuation date); and
- The day you sign the Financial Statement (today’s value).
Fifth, the Financial Statement shows the value of your debts on the same dates as you have listed for your assets.
Lastly, and this applies only to a Form 13.1 Financial Statement involving property issues, it lists any property that you are allowed to exclude by special rules. For example, this may include a gift or inheritance received after marriage but before your date of separation.
When you are finished filling in all of the information on the Financial Statement, you will need to sign it and swear that the information is true to the best of your knowledge. This needs be done in front of a Commissioner for Taking Oaths and Affidavits, such as a lawyer. This is very important, since accurately and truthfully disclosing your entire financial situation is essential to resolving your family law issues.
It’s also a good idea to provide a financial disclosure brief to your spouse and provide proof, such as a bank statement or credit card statement, for every value listed on your Financial Statement.
I’m Deleta Grandy. Thank you for watching today. Please be sure to watch the next installment Financial Statements, Part 2, to learn more about why we use Financial Statements.