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Contemplating Divorce? Here are the Essential Resources for a Smooth Financial Transition

The decision to pursue a divorce is never an easy one, and it comes with significant emotional and financial implications. While the emotional aspect requires support from friends, family, or even therapy, the financial aspect demands careful planning and professional guidance. Purse Strings is your go-to location for financial professionals who are uniquely equipped to serve a female market. And resources that can help you along the way – like this FREE Divorce Checklist. Download this first. Just working through this guide will save you a lot of time and money. Preparation is key when navigating life’s transitions – especially Divorce!

Here we’ve outlined the key resources you should consider when contemplating divorce. They include a certified divorce financial analyst, a certified divorce lending professional, a forensic accountant, a financial planner/advisor, and a divorce attorney or mediator. You may not need all of these experts, but depending on your situation, they can form a powerful team to help individuals navigate the complexities of divorce and ensure a smoother financial transition.


1. Divorce Attorney or Mediator

A divorce attorney or mediator is an essential resource to navigate the legal aspects of divorce. Whether representing clients in court or facilitating negotiations, their expertise ensures that legal procedures are followed, rights are protected, and agreements are legally binding. Mediators can provide a more amicable approach to divorce, helping both parties find common ground and work towards mutually beneficial solutions. This option can be less adversarial, save time, and reduce legal fees.

Michelle Lawless

Founder of The Law Office of Michelle A. Lawless, LLC

Michelle is a top-rated lawyer with more than 21 years of total legal experience, Ms. Lawless provides exceptional counsel and support to clients throughout the greater Chicago metro and surrounding areas who are going through a divorce or have some other serious legal issues affecting their families. Her passion for helping clients through difficult and complex situations was the reason she entered the field of family law over twenty years ago.

Sandra Crawford

Attorney, Mediator, and Collaborative Professional, Law Crawford, PC. 

For over 33 years, Sandra has dedicated her legal and mediation practices to educating and leading clients to the clearest path toward a peaceful resolution of their unique concerns.  She helps people move out of conflict using the most appropriate dispute resolution model for their individual needs – be that Collaborative Process, mediation, limited scope representation or settlement advocacy.

2. Financial Professional and/or CDFA

Engaging a financial planner or advisor who are Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) certified is crucial to chart a stable and secure financial path beyond divorce. These professionals can help clients reevaluate their financial goals, create a budget, and develop a post-divorce financial plan. They consider factors such as investment strategies, insurance needs, retirement planning, and college funding for children. And, they possess a deep understanding of divorce-related financial matters, including property division, tax implications, retirement assets, and spousal and child support calculations. The CDFA plays a crucial role in helping clients understand the short and long-term financial implications of different settlement options, empowering them to make informed decisions that align with their goals and priorities. Remember, your attorney has expertise in the law, not financials. So engaging with financial professionals who are CDFA certified can save you a lot of financial heartache.

Pam Friedman

Managing Director and Principal, Robertson Stephens

Pam is a Certified Financial Planner™ professional and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® who authored Financially Fit Divorce, a book on planning, negotiation, and avoiding costly mistakes to build a more secure financial future. She has been featured in publications, including The New York Times, U.S. News and World Report, Estate Planning Magazine, and has been on-air with ABC News Radio. In 2018, Pam was a finalist for Austin Woman Magazine’s Woman’s Way Business Award.

Nicole Turosky

Senior Financial Advisor with Wells Fargo Advisors,

Nicole is a Certified Financial Planner™ professional and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst®. Nicole offers a wealth of financial planning experience while focusing on divorce financials, financial abuse assistance, and socially conscious investing. Nicole hails from Connecticut and is licensed to serve all 50 states.

3. Certified Divorce Lending Professional:

A Certified Divorce Lending Professional (CDLP) is a specialist in mortgage financing and real estate matters related to divorce. This expert assists clients in navigating the complexities of mortgage lending during the divorce process. They can help determine the feasibility of keeping or selling the family home, guide clients through the refinancing process, and ensure that the mortgage decisions made are financially sustainable post-divorce. Moreover, they can look at the divorce agreement (before it’s signed) to review the proposed division of assets and assess the impact on your ability to own real estate in your own name.

Tami Wollensak

Sr. Mortgage Loan Officer with Wintrust Mortgage

Tami is a CDLP and a 25+ year veteran of the mortgage industry. She has experience working in multiple roles and facets of the industry. Her true passion is helping divorcing individuals navigate their home equity solutions while going through the most challenging time of their life.

4. Forensic Accountant

Uncertain as to where the money is? Are you wondering why things look a bit off? During a divorce, financial transparency is essential to ensure a fair and equitable division of assets. A forensic accountant is a financial expert who is skilled in uncovering and analyzing financial information and transactions. They can identify hidden assets, assess the value of businesses or complex financial holdings, and provide expert testimony if necessary. Their work helps ensure that both parties have an accurate picture of the marital finances, reducing the chances of disputes and promoting a smoother settlement process.

Susan Keeton

Owner, Susan J. Keaton

Susan is a Certified Public Accountant, a Certified Fraud Examiner, and a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst. She focuses on forensic accounting and fraud investigation. Her unique skill set, diverse level of experience, and ability to leverage technology allows her to efficiently and effectively analyze financial data and pinpoint everything from subtle irregularities to outright criminal activity. Whether it’s examining transactions where fraud is suspected, exposing cases of white-collar crime, sorting through data for business disputes, or digging up hidden assets for divorce proceedings, my dedication and expertise will show in the results.

Contemplating divorce is an emotionally challenging time, but with the right resources and guidance, the financial aspect can be managed more effectively. Seeking the support of these experts can turn a potentially daunting process into a path toward a new and financially stable beginning. Remember, each case is unique, so finding the right professionals who align with your needs is vital to achieving the best outcome for your specific situation.