David Smith

Collaborative Divorce

The unthinkable has happened- you or your spouse decided to pursue a divorce. Now what? It’s time for a long, contentious slog in court with fighting, bickering, and hefty fees, right?

What if there was another way – private, non-adversarial, potentially less costly, and much better for your family as a whole? Going to court is not the only way to get through a divorce. In fact, there are a few ways to avoid costly court divorces. Let’s take a look at one of them – the Collaborative Divorce Process to see if it’s a right fit for you.

The “Frozen Benefits” Rule

In an effort to standardize benefit divisions and “simplify” military divorces, Congress enacted the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 (NDAA 17). The new rule applies to those service members still serving (active-duty, National Guard, or Reserves), divorced after December 23rd, 2016, and is known as the “Frozen Benefit Rule” … which made divorce much more complicated for all parties involved.

The Gray Divorce Podcast – Military Divorce with Special Guest David Smith (Lt. Col. ret.)

Military Divorce is a different creature than civilian divorce and has a particular set of rules and regulations, as might befit the military! On this episode of The Gray Divorce Podcast Andrew Hatherley and I untangle the various rules and benefits that apply to couples in military divorce.

Divorce in the Military

If you’re a current or former member of the armed forces, chances are you’ve been trained for some of the most grueling and demanding situations out there. What that training doesn’t do, is prepare you for the challenges of a military divorce. Even for civilians,...

Top 3 Financial Strategies When Planning for Your Divorce

Divorce does screwy things to a person's head. Believe me, I’ve seen it. The once intelligent together person that you were, can turn into an emotional, brain-fogged, & unorganized basket case. You try really, really hard to keep it together, but you know this...

Three Serious Divorce Mistakes

Three Serious Divorce Settlement Mistakes  When you are facing a life changing transition such as divorce, what do you think you will find more valuable:  Someone to make you feel a little better by hinting that nothing has to change, or someone who will give it to...

The Mediation Option For Divorce & How to Prepare

Most people facing any day in front of a Judge in Court, would avoid it if they could. When going through divorce, that urge is just as strong.

Steps To Take Before You “Finally” Decide To Divorce

Almost every relationship begins with that “giddy” period of falling in love, imagining a long life together with your spouse, maybe having a couple of children together, and perhaps even a pet to round out the happy loving family.   What most people can’t imagine, is...

Should I Stay or Should I Go? Deciding to Leave a Marriage

There may be some red flags and early signs of irreconcilable issues along the way, but even so … the decision to dissolve a marriage is a very tough one.  Many people choose to stay and only find resolution when the spouse they’ve been with for so long thinking of leaving, up and leaves them first.

Retirement And “Survival” After A Gray Divorce

Over the last few years, one trend in divorce has firmly taken root. Baby Boomers are divorcing at double the rate of other groups. As our life expectancies lengthen, our attitudes about divorce evolve. And while it’s not still rapidly increasing quite as much, Boomer...
How Much Spousal Support/Alimony is Enough?

How Much Spousal Support/Alimony is Enough?

The answer shouldn’t be “As Much As I Can Get!” because there is only a limited pot to share. So, be fair about it.    Many couples going through a divorce after a mid-length or long-term marriage know that some level of Spousal Support or Alimony is needed, but...

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Five Questions To Ask Your “Potential” Divorce Attorney

Five Questions To Ask Your “Potential” Divorce Attorney

If you haven’t had the opportunity to watch the 2015 documentary “Divorce Corp.”, which is available on Netflix, take the time soon to do that.  It’s a frightening look at the corruption, collusion, and abuse that sometimes happens in the Family Court system.  After you see it you’ll wonder, how does a person protect themselves and know if their Attorney is one of the “good ones”?

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Divorce Financial Advice for Men

Divorce Financial Advice for Men

What’s a man contemplating, or already in the middle of a divorce, to do?  There seems to be multitudes of services that cater to helping women during this tough time. It’s true that women may need a little more emotional support and financial education during the process if their Husband had overseen the finances during the marriage. But the family finances may not always have been handled in this manner. Men can also struggle to find appropriate divorce-related resources that they need.

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Do I Really Need a QDRO?

Do I Really Need a QDRO?

Many times… that’s a definite YES! Let’s say you find yourself in the final stretch of your divorce and you can see hope at the end of the tunnel. Perhaps you’ve reached a proposed settlement agreement with your spouse, then your Attorney or Mediator brings up, “In order to split this retirement account, you need a QDRO done and there will be a cost for that.” You may want to just scream out, “Wait, what? Are you kidding? What the heck is a QDRO?”

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The Most Important Priorities In Your Divorce

Identify Your Priorities, Before Having Any Discussion With Your Spouse

Knowing your priorities will help you be confident in what to ask for, and what you can live without.

Worksheet My Priorities