Three Rules to Surviving Your Financial Disclosures in New Mexico
It is time for the dreaded Schedule of Assets and Debts. A required document when filing for divorce that constantly intimidates, overwhelms, and, yes, irritates most people. It may not by the number one question we hear, but without a doubt it makes the A list– “Do I really have to disclose everything on this document?”
The answer to this question is found in Rule 4-123 of New Mexico’s Family Law. The mandatory financial disclosure requires both spouses to produce information about:
• Individual and joint assets
• Individual and joint debts
• Income, such as income from wages, self-employment, and passive investments, and expenses.
Completing this document helps in three ways. One, it helps both parties understand what the debts and assets are. Two, it helps reach a settlement. Three, it allows a fair resolution to the division of property.
Now that you understand the benefits of a full financial disclosure let’s break it down into three steps to make it more manageable and less overwhelming.
Select the first 3 things you need to do and jot them down on a piece of paper, such as make a copy of the house deed or get a copy of the latest mortgage statement or search Zillow for the house’s fair market value. Once you have your list, complete it! If you get deterred, go back to number 1 and start again. When you start to get discouraged remember you only have 3 things on your list. After the first three items are checked off, make another list with 3 things to accomplish. Finish those three things before you move on to the next 3. Before you know it you will have all the information for a complete financial disclosure.
Before you turn in for the night, write down the next 3 things that you feel are the most important. Determine a set time of the day that you can work on these 3 things and stick to it. By using this technique you will always be working on your priorities.
Schedules of Assets and Debts can get very long. A good option would be to group similar issues together. For example, assets; house, cars, bank accounts, rental units, etc. Some people like to work on the same group until it is completed, while others like variety and will do 3 things from one group and then 3 things from a different group.
This isn’t rocket science. It is just good advice for making an overwhelming task seem more doable.