The role of the Financial Planner in Collaborative Practice

In our experience, fear and uncertainty about finances is often top of mind when ending a relationship or divorcing. Understandably, people’s anxiety around their new life and whether they can maintain elements of their existing lifestyle is all too common. Assessing the current combined financial position and what this will look like when a two income household becomes one is an important part of the collaborative law approach to divorce and separation.

Do I need a financial planner when separating?

Collaborative family law has a focus on transparency and the sharing of information to reach an outcome that is supportive of the needs of both parties. Working with a financial planner as part of the collaborative law process can help you understand and plan for the next phase of your life.

A key feature of this is financial transparency and recognising the needs and wants of the separating partners and their children. Examining and budgeting for these needs and wants is an important part of the collaborative approach to the marriage separation process.  Central to this is parents coming to a shared understanding of each other’s priorities for their children and agreeing how the monetary aspects of these priorities may be managed.

Planning for the life you wish to lead

A collaboratively trained family lawyer, working alongside a financial planner allows each party to table and discuss their priorities – things such as education choices for children, where they wish to live and  immediate and longer term financial goals, including retirement and superannuation factors. It may also include discussion of each party’s aptitude and experience with things such as budgeting, goal setting and day to day bill payment.

A financial consultant with family law and separation experience can look at the shared assets, liabilities and earnings of divorcing partners to examine the consequences of a proposed settlement and how this will impact the new life they wish to lead.

Combining the planner’s financial expertise with the understanding of the family law process offered by your collaboratively trained family lawyer ensures all parties are aware of their current and future financial state and are best positioned to move forward in a positive manner.


At Umbrella Family Law we understand that the end of a relationship or divorce can bring financial upheaval necessitating a realignment of plans, aspirations and expectations.  Having worked in family law across Melbourne and Victoria over a number of years, we know that financial awareness and understanding is central to achieving a satisfactory legal and financial end to a relationship.