Ending a marriage is a complex legal task. If you are planning to file for divorce, you need to realize that a host of experts will be looking at your case to help determine the best way to distribute assets, divide custody of children, and award alimony or child support payments.
These experts play a valuable role in helping to ensure that divorce proceedings are fair and equitable.
1. Forensic Accountant
It's not uncommon for one spouse to attempt to hide assets from the other during a divorce. Most states view assets acquired after the marriage as communal property that must be divided equally between the spouses.
A forensic account has the skill and expertise required to investigate a couple's financial background. Forensic accounts can trace assets, evaluate financial trends, and locate hidden assets that need to be included in the divorce decree.
2. Property Appraiser
Another type of expert that you can expect to work with when filing for divorce is a property appraiser. The division of assets and debts is one of the most significant points of disagreement in many divorce proceedings. Rather than relying on the spouses to accurately report the total value of the marital assets, courts typically refer this task to a property appraiser instead.
The appraiser will compile a list of anything that has value and should be included in your divorce. Based on the current market demand and the condition of each asset, the appraiser will then assign a value to the assets so that a judge can determine equitable distribution. Common assets that a property appraiser deals with include homes, vehicles, businesses, art, furnishings, and jewelry items.
3. Child Custody Evaluator
If you have children, you will need to come to an agreement with your spouse on custody matters. Many divorces become serious battles on issues of child custody. A child custody evaluator may be called in by the court to help provide information that a judge can use to make custody decisions that are in the best interest of your children.
Child custody evaluators perform in-depth investigations into each spouse. Children are often interviewed, and testing is performed to help the child custody evaluator gather information pertaining to the welfare of the children. The findings of a child custody evaluator's investigation often carry significant weight when the court is called upon to award custody of minor children during any divorce proceedings.
For more information, contact your local divorce attorney.