Managing Retirement and Divorce

We appreciate that divorce can be complicated. Even where parties agree on all the issues it can be important to speak with a family law attorney regarding some of the more “hidden” aspects of divorce. Many clients have a firm grasp and understanding of their personal property; one person gets grandma’s ring, the other the dinnerware or TV. But when it comes to dividing financial assets it can be easy for the average client to feel a little bit lost without a helping hand to guide them through.


Retirement Benefits


Next to a house, many couples most important asset can be their retirement account, and dividing these up is not as simple as taking half. Retirement benefits could also vest in a number of ways, like through stock options or pension plans which both have different ways of being calculated. Cashing out a retirement plan could have important tax consequences that need to be taken into account when valuing the asset. Even where it may be technically possible, you may need a QRDO, or qualified domestic relations order before moving forward.


Health Insurance


Often courts will require health care for any minor parties, and if retirement is in your future you will need to consider the consequences of health insurance and retirement as well. Does your health insurance continue? Will you need to apply for private insurance when you leave your job?


Tax Implications


Even where benefits seem simple it is important to understand the tax consequences and include these in any property divisions. For example, that 401k is suddenly going to lose a lot of value if it ends up being cashed out early, and you won’t want to wait until tax time for this surprise.

For any questions or concerns regarding retirement and divorce please contact Elise Buie Family Law Group, PLLC for a free consultation. 

STAY UP TO DATE

Subscribe to our newsletters

 
Subscribe to one or more of our newsletters, delivering meaningful insight on topics that matter to you and your family.

FURTHER READING

Latest Blog Posts

A revocable trust or living trust is an instrument created, as part of your overall estate plan, for the purpose of protecting your assets, including investments, during your lifetime. It can also allow for a smoother transition of said assets…

A prenup can take many of the “what ifs” off the table in the event of divorce. What is separate property, who might have to maintain life insurance, and who will keep the heirloom piano that’s been passed down for…

Many people find it challenging to get started with estate planning. From confusion about the process to denying that estate planning is necessary, there are various reasons why people do not want to create an estate plan. That said, estate…

After divorce, it is common to experience feelings of shame. That shame could arise from multiple sources, including feeling that you let your spouse or children down or because you are worried about what others may think of you. Regardless…

Estate planning can feel overwhelming, but it is necessary to ensure your assets are in order and your loved ones are taken care of. Establishing an estate plan can also make certain issues easier for you and your family during…

In Washington state, alimony is referred to as maintenance. Maintenance is court-ordered spousal support payments that one spouse makes to assist with the living expenses of the other spouse for a period of time and for a particular purpose.  Maintenance…

The homes. The boat. The investment accounts. During a high-net-worth divorce, the disposition of these and other assets (and debts) may be one of the most significant reasons underlying the contention between you and your soon-to-be-ex, making these types of…

This is part three of our three-part series, “Expecting the Unexpected.” You can read part one on catastrophic illness here and part two on chronic illness here. Estate planning may initially bring to mind the process of outlining the manner…

It seemed like it was going to be just another day. Get the kids off to school, do household chores, go to work. But then your spouse let you know it was over between you, that they want a divorce.…

This is part two of three in our series “Expecting the Unexpected. You can read part one on catastrophic illness here. For many, estate planning immediately brings to mind ways you can protect your assets and retirement funds for your…