Divorce and Financial Modelling

I used to have little use for divorce attorneys. I used to think it could never happen to me. But -- the wonderment -- it did! I now look at attorneys as a friend in need, cleaning up a very messy situation, helping me when I could not help myself.

[Not all divorce attorneys are in this category, but I have been fortunate to have good ones.]

In the course of my divorce, my lovely bride made accusations about me spending money disproportional to my contributions to the joint account. It is easy to make accusations. It is harder to disprove them.

So, I scanned in all the statements and parsed each transaction into a data file. I then wrote a simple Ruby program that adds up the amounts of all the categories and produces a nice report. My program printed all the items in each category with a running total, so that the opposing attorney can pick out individual items to discuss. But they never did. The evidence was overwhelming and did not depend on any selection of disputed items.

Well, that was many years ago, and now I find myself in the same situation again. Only it is not my divorce. I am assisting a client in a similar situation.

I am hoping that this kind of concrete data analysis will help them come to a quicker and less hateful finalization. People can do the “she said” and the “he said” stuff for years, but when confronted with actual data, it is not what “she said”, it is what the “data shows”.

Okay, I am back to scanning now....