Do you work in conjunction with lawyers?
As I am a financial, not a legal specialist, I provide the advice required by clients to formulate their financial decisions around separation and divorce.
This can be utilised in a multitude of different ways, from liaising with client’s lawyers, to working up strategies in preparation for eventual implementation by a lawyer, to clients submitting their own paperwork to the family courts. The flexibility is there to cater for all of these circumstances.
How have we seen clients benefit most from our services?
As well as providing a great deal of support, strategies and the ability to set out reasoned financial arguments, we are also ultimately helping our client(s) understand their financial situation throughout the divorce process and beyond. We have been told that the relief of feeling more in control throughout the process, due to being armed with our knowledge and tailored suggestions is incredibly helpful.
Everything we do is highly personalised. It is not done to a formula. Therefore, our clients seem to gain confidence throughout the process and use that momentum to actually improve their financial future despite divorce!
Do you receive commissions or charge a fee?
As Divorce Planning is often far more involved than investment placement and frequently does not involve any financial product advice, but simply strategy, we charge a fee for our services. This is currently $240 + GST per hour. (The initial consultation is free as you need to know whether or not you feel comfortable working with us).
If any commission results due to any financial products being required as a result of the advice, this is disclosed and used to offset the service fee.
(N.B. Financial products would tend not to be recommended until much later in the process, once settlement has been reached and new arrangements need to be put in place, such as superannuation, insurance and mortgages – through a referral to our credit advisory department). This all needs to be mindful of new post-divorce budgets and revised strategies on how to achieve a comfortable and secure future.
Can you provide advice over the phone or email?
Yes, generally we can talk over the phone, Skype, and/or email. It is not absolutely necessary to meet face to face.
I do not want investment advice – why would I see a financial planner?
Although we can, and often do give investment advice, our divorce planning service is designed to help you understand and plan for the financial implications of your divorce. Investment advice can form part of this service, however, it is not the main aim.
Do you provide advice for both men and women?
Absolutely. Both partners need to plan for the financial implications of divorce as much as the other partner. As we are not directly involved in the legalities of the property settlement, we can advise both sides as a package. This often helps both sides understand the needs of the other.
Around 30% of the time we work with both parties. The remainder of the time we may be specifically engaged by one party only.
Are you licensed by the government?
Of course, we are licensed by ASIC as part of the Blue Print Advisors Group AFSL# 423936) and Anna-Louise Brown is a Certified Financial Planner member of the Financial Planning Association.