Family Lawyer Magazine: Digging Deeper Into Lifestyle Analysis

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family-lawyer-magazineWritten by Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, CFF

Family Lawyer Magazine
2013 Print Edition

A thorough lifestyle analysis can help discover undisclosed income and assets.

digging-deeper-lifestyle-analysisIn an ordinary lifestyle analysis, the divorce financial analyst extracts all of the transactions from bank, brokerage and credit card statements, categorizes them and calculates totals for each category for the period under analysis. This is an important exercise to assess what the parties to a divorce have historically spent and determining an appropriate level of support. It can also be used to determine whether a spouse was wasting or dissipating marital assets.

More importantly, the lifestyle analysis can also be used to uncover hidden income and assets, or help prove that one spouse is living a lifestyle that exceeds the reported sources of income. The typical lifestyle analysis may only scratch the surface of the financial facts of the case, leaving behind important clues about the finances of the parties. Diving deeper can uncover hidden finances that may have otherwise been overlooked. Continue reading