Your children's weddings and college costs can be huge, but these happy events can usually be handled over time. What brings about 70 percent of clients to a financial planner are life-changing events for which they have no plan.

* Divorce. Dividing a household will create economic havoc. It's a time when a financial planner can help you figure your net worth, current expenses, and long-term financial needs. These are all important parts of a divorce settlement.

* Death of a spouse. It's difficult in a time of grief to deal with the proceeds of life insurance, retirement plans, and investments.

* The big windfall. When you're lucky enough to win the lottery, or get a big inheritance, you'll need a financial planner. First, stash the money in a low-risk money-market fund until you've made your plan.

* Career change. A financial analyst will help you determine how much you need to live on, an important factor in deciding if you can work fewer hours, take a new job, or start a business.

In all of life's emotional earthquakes, a good advisor can help you achieve security, say advisors writing in USA Today.