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Your Financial Declaration is Part of the Mediation Prep

On behalf of Gregory W. Stevens, Attorney at Law on Monday, November 4, 2019.

If your marriage is coming to an end, you may dread the idea of a lengthy court battle and are strongly considering divorce mediation as another option.

If you prepare well, the process will go smoothly. Part of that preparation includes putting together your financial declaration.

First Steps

You must first talk with your spouse about the idea of mediation. Because cooperation forms the basis of the process, you must work together to reach an agreement. Your spouse may be as opposed to litigation as you are, so mediation should be an easy sell because it is a faster, less stressful and much less expensive path to divorce. As compared to litigation, it is also a private process that allows you and your soon-to-be-ex to set the tone and control the outcome.

The Financial Declaration and More

In the state of Utah, a financial declaration lists your income sources and expenses, as well as your personal property and other financial information. You should make a list of marital possessions and the possessions you owned before marriage. As you enter into mediation, you should know which assets you need and which you can live without. Assets could include real property, furniture, jewelry, insurance policies, retirement accounts, investments, bank accounts and Social Security income. Your expenses will include items such as your mortgage payment, annual utility and food bills, car payment and loans.

The Terms You Want

You must be ready to discuss terms. What do you need out of this divorce? What are you willing to give up? Your mediator, a neutral third party, will not take sides but will instead guide you and your spouse in making necessary decisions and redirect any anger or frustration that arises, ensuring that the discussion gets back on track.

Looking Forward

Mediation sets a foundation in place for meaningful talks. Going through the process helps you and your spouse work toward civil communication not just for the divorce itself, but also for future interaction, especially if you have children to raise. Preparing for the process requires time and thought, especially with respect to developing your financial declaration. In the end, however, you will appreciate the time you took because it ensures that your mediation sessions run efficiently and smoothly.