David A. Schwartz
Pro Se Coordinator
RELEASE ON: July 14, 2003
DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS FOR FINANCIAL STATEMENT
AVAILABLE FROM PROBATE AND FAMILY COURT
Probate and Family Court has released a new informational
pamphlet which provides detailed instructions for completion
of the short form Financial Statement. Each party must file
a Financial Statement at least once during any divorce, paternity,
separate support or other case involving child support, alimony,
division of assets or other financial matters. Parties with
incomes of up to $75,000.00 per year must file a short form.
The long form Financial Statement is reserved for those individuals
with income over $75,000.00.
Financial Statement, which reports the party's income, expenses,
assets and liabilities, is widely cited as the most important
document filed in a domestic relations case. The Court uses
the financial information to make orders for child support,
alimony and division of assets. Chief Justice Dunphy said
"It is extremely important that judges have accurate financial
information from parties to domestic relations cases. The
judges rely on this information to make important, lasting
decisions which will affect the future of the parties and
their children. Court staff, volunteer Lawyers for the Day
and attorneys make outstanding efforts every day to inform
litigants about the importance of the Financial Statement
and this new pamphlet will assist litigants with completing
the form more completely and accurately. We are grateful to
the Department of Revenue for its contribution to the printing
costs of the pamphlet".
information in the pamphlet will be helpful to both represented
and unrepresented litigants. Attorneys are encouraged to copy
the instructions and make them available to their clients.
As with all the uniform pamphlets produced by the Administrative
Office of the Probate and Family Court, the instructions for
the Financial Statement contain prominent language warning
readers that probate and family law matters involve complex
and valuable legal rights and that they should speak with
an attorney before filing any court papers.
other informational pamphlets produced by the Administrative
Office include "Looking for Legal Assistance?", "Before Asking
for Help...", and "Before Going into Court..." (which are
also available in Spanish and Portugese) and several instructional
pamphlets for the forms required to petition for appointment
as guardian of a minor. All pamphlets are available at the
Registries of Probate and Probation Offices of the fourteen
Divisions of the Probate and Family Court.