Parents and Divorce: Will We Make it Through the Holidays?

December 10, 2015 by Brett Jones


Whether you are currently going through a divorce or the divorce is now done, holidays and holiday memories, often involving family traditions, can stir up many mixed emotions. Can it ever be happy and bright again? Will your children ever look forward to the holiday season again? While we can tell our clients that they will get through it; they can create new traditions; they can have a happy holiday after all; we know that it might be easier said than done. Here are some resources for managing difficult feelings at the holidays. The first half-dozen articles focus on your children; a second group of articles put the focus on you. The final article focuses on adult children of divorcing parents.

Helping Children of Divorce Through the Holidays

Keeping the Holiday Spirit Alive During Divorce

How divorced parents can help their children survive the holidays

Facing the Holiday Season After Divorce

Children, Divorce and the Holidays

Divorce and the Holidays — Putting Children First

MIFR, a tool that can support you in creating the holiday you want

7 Ways to Create New Traditions For Your Family Post-Divorce

5 Tips on Handling Emotions During the Holidays

5 Tips for Making It Through the Holidays as a Single Parent

Tips for Enjoying the Holidays After Divorce

Holiday Tips for Separated and Divorced Parents

12 Tips for Bringing Light Back to the ‘Hard-Knock’ Holidays

Adult Children With Recently Divorced Parents: 10 Ways to Navigate the Holidays



December 8, 2015 by Brett Jones

Lazar & Schwartz lawyers Brett E. Jones and Kathryn S. Lazar spoke to regional representatives of MassMutual Financial Group, sharing their experience and insights about the connections and interplay between divorce and financial planners for those considering divorce, where the client’s spouse is seeking a divorce, or where the couple is in the midst of a divorce. Some 20 financial planners listened and questioned the two lawyers about such legal/financial crossovers in divorce.

After describing ways of getting divorced that differ from the ways of 20 years ago, the two lawyers addressed substantive financial issues that arise in divorce, such as a couple’s marital property and each spouse’s separate property; retirement assets; valuation of a business owned by one or both spouses; and life insurance.

The lawyers also spoke from experience about aspects of divorce that are not learned in law school, but in years of practice, focusing on particular challenges that people face when they are divorcing and the fact that litigation is not the only way to get divorced. They also pointed out that steps taken and statements made by the financial planner in working with a couple or with one spouse, prior to divorce, or during a divorce, can be beneficial in the divorce process or have a negative impact on it.

Questions from the audience included issues relating to confidentiality and the ethical differences when a financial planner is working with the spouses as couple, rather than just one spouse.

“It’s stimulating to present our knowledge and experience to professionals working in complementary disciplines,” Ms. Lazar said. “We learn as much from the questions as the audience learns from the answers.”