Accurate valuation and tax considerations crucial in dividing retirement funds

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in Property Division on Thursday, June 18, 2015.

Property division in divorce can have long-term financial repercussions, and it’s important to have a good property division lawyer on your side. Among the assets that can be divided in divorce, retirement funds may be particularly important to hold onto if you want to live comfortably in your golden years.

In Illinois, marital property is divided according to the principle of equitable distribution. Note: “equitable” does not necessarily mean “equal.” Rather, marital estates, which could include corporate pensions, 401(k) plans, IRA accounts and military pensions, may be divided in proportion to each spouse’s right to the asset, and depending an a variety of factors, one spouse may be entitled to a larger portion of the retirement fund.

At Stange Law Firm, PC, we give our clients a comprehensive picture of the marital estate, including an accurate valuation of any retirement funds. Often retirement accounts consist of pre-tax savings, and the tax implications should be taken into consideration when dividing retirement funds between spouses.

If you know much about how divorce can affect a retirement account, then you may know something about Qualified Domestic Relations Orders, or QDROs. A QDRO is used to establish or recognize the right of an alternate payee — someone who didn’t directly participate in the retirement plan — to receive a portion or all of the plan benefits.

A QDRO can therefore be used to protect a divorcing spouse’s right to retirement savings.

If you have questions about any of these matters, then don’t hesitate to speak with a divorce and property division lawyer in your area.

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