How Can I Protect My Retirement in a Divorce?

How Can I Protect My Retirement in a Divorce?

Splitting Assets Later in Life

Couples in long-term marriages have been divorcing at higher rates than ever before. According to AARP, the divorce rate for people over 50 doubled between 1990 and 2010, equalling 10 divorced people per 1,000 married people over 50. While there are many reasons why older couples divorce, such as infidelity, financial problems, and growing apart, older divorcing couples face a unique set of economic challenges as opposed to their younger counterparts. One of the main concerns in late-life divorce is protecting retirement assets. Here’s what you need to know.

How are Retirement Benefits Handled in a Florida Divorce?

When it comes to dividing assets, Florida follows an “equitable distribution” rule. Equitable distribution does not mean that all assets are split 50/50 — it means that assets are distributed fairly and equitably. To understand how retirement benefits are distributed in a Florida divorce, it’s first essential to know the difference between marital property and separate property:

  • Marital property - any property or assets acquired during the marriage.
  • Separate property - any property or assets acquired by each spouse before the marriage.

The value accumulated before your marriage can be considered separate property when it comes to retirement assets such as 401Ks and pension plans. However, the value accumulated during the marriage falls under marital property. If you and your spouse both have separate retirement benefits and are of similar value, distributing these assets may not be necessary. However, if you have significantly higher retirement assets, it can be up for equitable distribution in your divorce. Read on to learn how negotiating other assets can help you keep your retirement benefits intact.

Making Negotiations to Keep Your Retirement Benefits

If other assets need to be distributed in the divorce, these assets can be used to offset the distribution of your retirement benefits. For example, giving your ex-spouse the vacation home or personal property such as vehicles and jewelry. The process of determining the equitable distribution and asset negotiations can be complicated. It’s critical to have the help of an experienced divorce attorney look over your retirement assets and what will be the best course of action in protecting your retirement.

Concerned About Divorce and Splitting Retirement Assets? We Can Help.

Splitting assets in any divorce can be a contentious situation, and when it comes to retirement benefits, it can be difficult to let go of some of them in a divorce. However, you have options when it comes to protecting your retirement assets. At Owenby Law, P.A. we are experienced in handling late-life divorce cases. When up against a unique set of challenges, we’ve got you covered. Let us help protect your rights.

Contact Owenby Law, P.A. today at (904) 770-3141 to schedule a free initial consultation with our team.


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