When filing for a divorce in California, there are a number of steps required to successfully complete the California divorce process. Whether the parties agree or disagree, the financial disclosure process is required to be completed, at minimum, by the Petitioner, and by both parties if the matter is settled by agreement or goes to trial. Read on to learn more about completing financial disclosures for a California divorce and what documentation you will need.
Documents Required For Preliminary and Financial Disclosures
There are two stages to the financial disclosure process in California divorces, the Preliminary Disclosures and the Final Disclosures. The parties can mutually agree to waive the Final Disclosures. You can read more details about the mandatory disclosure process in California here. Depending on the issues involved in your case, a party may need to attach personal and financial documents when completing financial disclosures for a California divorce. These documents may date back a year or more before the parties separated. In some cases, a party may need to provide documents that date back even further. California law requires a complete and full disclosure of all assets and debts known to exist by each party. Failure to provide accurate and complete disclosure can lead to court sanctions, an award of attorney fees to the other party, or the Final Judgment being set aside. Therefore, if a person is going through a divorce proceeding in California, it is extremely important they take care when completing the financial disclosures. The Preliminary and Final Disclosures that are served on the other party should be detailed and accurate and include all supporting documentation.
Checklist For Individuals Completing Financial Disclosures in California Divorce
The following checklist will help couples who are completing financial disclosures for a California divorce. This reference list will help to quickly identify typical documentation they will need as they navigate through this process.
- Personal State and Federal income tax returns for the past three to five years
- Business (partnership, corporate, LLC, etc.) State and Federal income tax returns for the past three to five years
- Proof of current income (Including W-2 forms, 1099 forms, and recent pay stubs)
- Prenuptial agreement, if one exists
- Bank statements for open accounts and any accounts closed during the 12 months before separation
- Retirement account statements
- Stock portfolios and options
- Pension statements
- Credit card statements
- Any existing loan documents
- Proof of any other debt (tuition, medical bills, etc.)
- Life, health, automobile and homeowners insurance policies
- Real property deeds for any property you or your spouse own individually or together as well as any properties owned by any entity that you have an interest in
- A detailed list of personal property, including jewelry, home furnishings, artwork, electronic equipment, clothing, etc.
- List of real property and assets owned by each spouse before marriage
Preliminary and Financial Disclosure Forms
The documents that are used in either the Preliminary or Final disclosure in California are as follows:
(1) Schedule of Assets and Debts (FL 142);
(2) Income and Expense Declaration (FL 150);
(3) Declaration of Disclosure (FL 140); and
(4) Declaration Regarding Service of Disclosure (FL 141).
Completing financial disclosures in a California divorce proceeding requires attention to detail and can be very overwhelming. For professional help preparing either the Preliminary Disclosure or Financial Disclosure in a California divorce, contact A People’s Choice at 800-747-2780. Our office has over 35 years of experience completing financial disclosures for couples going through a California divorce.