In addition to the financial affidavit, certain documentation must also be exchanged between the parties within approximately six weeks from the date of filing. If it is a simplified divorce this requirement can be waived by both parties. The Financial Affidavits must be produced, however.
The documents that are required include:
- Income tax returns
- Pay stubs for the past three months
- Statement of income
- Loan applications and financial statements prepared during the preceding 12 months
- Deeds, leases and promissory notes executed during the past 12 months
- Checking account statements for the past three months
- Bank statements (other than checking) for the past 12 months
- Brokerage account statements for the last 12 months
- The most recent statements showing the value of retirement accounts, profit sharing or deferred compensation accounts.
- Life insurance documentation
- Credit card statements for the past three months
The above list is just a partial list of what might be required. Requests often require documents dating back three years. It is not unusual that clients often become quite anxious when assigned the task of gathering this information.
Here are a few words of advice:
- Do not wait for the last minute to gather these items. Time deadlines are extremely important and any delays could result in sanctions, which can include payment of attorney’s fees to opposing counsel.
- Don’t try and do everything at once. Give yourself enough time to “pace yourself.”
- Be as accurate as possible in filling out all Financial Affidavits. Please remember that it is a sworn document and your answers (if incorrect) can be used against you.
- Do not ignore items or questions you feel are not relevant. If you are not sure of something, just ask.
If you have an attorney, don’t be afraid to ask questions and seek his/her advice. It can make this task a lot less stressful for all concerned.