One of the most important tools a family lawyer can use in a divorce case is a lifestyle analysis: the process of tabulating and analyzing the income and expenses of the parties in order to confirm or refute a spouse’s income claims, among other uses.
A financial expert or forensic accountant can play an integral part in a divorce case involving complex financial matters. One of the most important tools they can use is a lifestyle analysis, a component being employed in an increasing number of divorces.
Know the critical documents used and the process to complete a thorough and accurate analysis. Learn the information that can be gleaned from tax returns, financial statements, bank statements, and other financial documents.
The lifestyle analysis is then used to determine the standard of living for all parties, which will influence important support calculations and may affect property division. Additionally, a lifestyle analysis can uncover hidden sources of income and be used to evaluate the finances of each party in a prenuptial agreement.
The book begins with the critical factors to use in analyzing a couple’s standard of living, followed by a discussion of the various types of income and why they should be either included or excluded from calculations in a family law case.
To help an attorney determine whether a lifestyle analysis is necessary for a particular case, the author discusses the numerous red flags that may indicate hidden income or assets or other financial irregularities.
Additional chapters focus on key elements included in a lifestyle analysis, including:
Analyzing historical spending
Locating hidden assets
Business lifestyle analysis
Reporting and testifying
The Only Book On Lifestyle Analysis
Tracy talks about why the book is so powerful for attorneys
Chapter 1 – Purpose of the Lifestyle Analysis
Chapter 2 – Standard of Living
Chapter 3 – Defining and Calculating Income
Chapter 4 – Preparing for the Lifestyle Analysis
Chapter 5 – Financial Discovery
Chapter 6 – Documents Used in the Lifestyle Analysis
Chapter 7 – Financial Analysis of Documents
Chapter 8 – Historical Spending and Budgeting
Chapter 9 – Hidden Income
Chapter 10 – Hidden Assets
Chapter 11 – Special Items in Lifestyle Analysis
Chapter 12 – Business Lifestyle Analysis
Chapter 13 – Reporting Findings and Testifying
Lifestyle Analysis in Divorce Cases
what people are saying
This book is a great tool for family law attorneys dealing with complex financial matters. Tracy Coenen takes the time to explain both the basic and complex financial concepts that you will deal with in divorce and child support cases.
Excellent resource. As both a practicing attorney and a law professor, I highly recommend this book to both my colleagues and students.
As a practicing divorce lawyer, I have had several opportunities to reference this book. It is clean, concise, and authoritative. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking to learn the “tricks of the trade.”