Mandatory Disclosures are comprised of a Sworn Financial Statement (SFS) and the provision of specified underlying documents. Disclosure must occur within 42 days after service of a Petition or a post-decree motion involving financial issues. If reasonably possible, disclosure should occur prior to an initial status conference. A party attests through a Certificate of Compliance that the SFS and underlying documents have been provided and states the date on which they are provided.
When signing the SFS and Certificate of Compliance, a party is attesting that to the best of his or her knowledge the disclosures are accurate and complete. Disclosures must be supplemented or amended as changes occur. The SFS is filed with the court, however the underlying documents are not. The provided documents are identified in the Certificate of Compliance. If a party does not timely provide disclosures, the court may impose sanctions. If there is a material omission or misstatement in disclosure, a court may reopen a property division for up to five years after the decree issues. This is one more reason to be complete and accurate in disclosure, though they may seem time-consuming and tedious at the time.
Although parties are required to exchange mandatory disclosures and the SFS before the initial status conference to the extent reasonably possible, early disclosure in practice is not common. The financial disclosures are quite detailed and most parties consume the entire allotted amount of time to complete them.Sworn Financial Statements
The SFS is one of the most important documents filed in a case and the court relies extensively on it. Credibility may be irreparably damaged if the statement is not complete or accurate. Courts often notice if numbers appear to be artificially inflated or reduced. For example, if someone is living on public assistance, they are not likely to be making substantial charitable contributions or spending large sums on the purchase of lottery tickets or professional hair and nailcare each month. There are a number of software programs that attorneys utilize to generate financial statements, and pro se litigants can use the JDF forms published on the Colorado Judicial branch website.Mandatory Document Disclosures
The underlying documents to the SFS are disclosed to the other party. The disclosures are generally provided to the other party when the SFS is filed with the court. In general the documents that must be provided are:
- Income tax returns for the past three years;
- Personal financial statements for the past three years
- Credit and loan applications
- Business financial statements for the past three years
- Real estate documents such as title documents
- Documents stating the value of real property such as an appraisal
- Personal debt statements
- Documents creating debt such as loan documents;
- Investment documents
- Employment benefit documents
- Retirement plan summary descriptions and statements
- Bank and financial institution account statements
- Income documentation such as pay statements
- Employment- and education-related childcare documentation
- Insurance documentation such as life, health, and property statements;
- Extraordinary children’s expense documentation such as for private school or extracurricular activities
A knowledgeable and experienced divorce and family law attorney can guide you through Colorado Springs divorce and family law matters by negotiating, mediating and litigating. This allows you to focus on to a better future. Divorce and family law matters are difficult to navigate alone.
Sabra Janko from Janko Family Law is a knowledgeable and experienced attorney who protects your best interests and ensures that you are aware of your legal rights and obligations. Contact us at 719-344-5523 for a free 30-minute informational consultation or complete our online form.