Divorce can be a challenging and emotional process, especially for couples who are in their silver years. As you navigate the complexities of separating your lives, you should be sure to pay special attention to your retirement assets.
There are some key strategies you can follow to safeguard your financial future even as you tackle the other aspects of a silver divorce.
Assess your retirement accounts
Begin by taking stock of your retirement savings. Identify all the accounts you and your spouse have, including 401(k)s, IRAs and pensions. Knowing the full extent of your retirement assets will help you make informed decisions about how to divide them.
Understand the rules
Different retirement accounts have different rules for division during divorce. Familiarize yourself with these rules to ensure a fair distribution. For example, while a 401(k) may require a Qualified Domestic Relations Order for division, you can split an IRA without one.
Explore alternative assets
Instead of dividing retirement accounts, explore the possibility of trading other assets. This could include the family home or investments outside of retirement accounts. Be mindful of the tax implications and potential growth of these alternative assets over time.
Seek professional guidance
Navigating a silver divorce and protecting your retirement requires careful consideration and expertise. Consult with financial professionals who specialize in divorce-related matters. They can provide valuable insights tailored to your unique situation and help you make sound financial decisions.
Research shows that one in three people who divorce in the United States are above the age of 50. For these individuals facing the unique effects of a silver divorce, the matter of retirement is one that requires utmost care and consideration.