We periodically feature our members (Fellows) so that you can learn more about then, Collaborative divorce, and our organization.
Name: Kimberly Grady
Profession: CPA, CDFA
Title: Financial Neutral
What do you find rewarding about practicing Collaborative Divorce?
I find using my expertise to help people and families who are going through a challenging time the most rewarding about practicing Collaborative Divorce. This process allows me to dive into a creative process to assist both parties in making decisions that have long-term consequences. Everyone is different, and I find it extremely rewarding to be able to understand all clients, no matter their financial background.
What should clients know about you as a Collaborative Divorce professional?
Clients should know that I am thorough, open-minded and compassionate. During the Collaborative Divorce process, as the financial neutral, I am going to give both parties as much financial information as they need to feel ready to make informed, creative, and well-thought out decisions. I will ensure all parties understand all of the nuances of the financial estate. That way I can help clients understand all of the financial details and decisions to be made, as well as helping their attorneys understand their finances so that they can effectively assist their clients during the Collaborative Divorce process.
If I had to summarize in one sentence, I help clients broaden and refine their individual perspectives, and it can be very powerful. During our discussions, we often find nuggets of gold that are helpful to everyone involved.
When you are not hard at work practicing in the Collaborative world what do you do for fun?
My husband and I have two teenage boys, who keep us incredibly busy. They both play a variety of sports, so you will usually find me watching a baseball game or basketball game, and possibly a football game in the future (with my eyes closed most of the time if my son is on the field). I also love to read, ride my bike (and Peloton), and do really anything outdoors.
What kind of training did you receive as a Collaborative professional?
I have been working on Collaborative Divorce cases for almost 10 years now, and there is no training that compares to real life cases and experience. Having said that, formal training is crucial. My formal training includes basic training with CDI in 2016, as well as a 40-hour mediation skills training through the Center for Conflict Resolution in 2019. Ongoing financial, mediation and collaborative evaluation also helps me stay smart and stay current.
How does the Collaborative Process address clients’ financial issues?
The Collaborative Divorce process allows clients to review and fully understand all of the nuances of their financial estate before making informed, often very creative, decisions on different categories of their finances. When I work with clients, I ensure they look at a multitude of financial issues from multiple perspectives. I help them gain perspective not only on the nuances and details of their finances, but as importantly – the short and long-term consequences of various decisions. Many times, clients will tell me they learned more about their finances through the Collaborative Divorce process than they ever knew before! More specifically, I help both clients understand all the different categories of assets and liabilities they have and talk about possible ways to handle each. We also discuss cash flow and create an estimated budget for the post-divorce timeframe for both parties, while incorporating children expenses as well. I run cash flow projections into the future if needed and discuss what it would look like if their agreement was one way, two ways, or multiple ways. Through the Collaborative Divorce process, clients are not only able to address immediate financial issues, but also address any known future financial issues as well.