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Can I keep my retirement accounts after my divorce?

On Behalf of | Mar 31, 2022 | Divorce |

You’ve worked hard to accumulate your wealth. Now it may be in jeopardy because your marriage is falling apart. It’s a common and oftentimes frightening prospect, and one that you need to be prepared to confront head-on.

Can you protect your retirement accounts?

As stressful as that may seem, the good news is that there are ways to negotiate and litigate your divorce so that you can secure a fair and favorable outcome that sets you up for a successful future. For example, if your pension plan or retirement account is brought into the property division process, then you may want to consider these alternatives to dividing those accounts:

  • Giving your spouse the marital home, especially if there’s no remaining mortgage on the property
  • Providing your spouse with a life insurance policy with him or her named as a beneficiary, which can save you money but give your spouse the security that he or she wants
  • Allowing your spouse to take ownership of highly valuable personal property, such as jewelry or artwork
  • Negotiating some sort of spousal support arrangement

Keep in mind that there are other factors that have to be taken into consideration in these matters. For example, although your spouse may be interested in retaining the martial home, he or she may not be so excited about the maintenance and the taxes associated with it. Therefore, before sitting down at the negotiation table, you need to have a strong and persuasive strategy that seeks to protect your retirement accounts.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst

Although you might be able to negotiate a settlement that allows you to keep your retirement accounts, you should still prepare for the possibility of division. Therefore, you should speak with your attorney about Qualified Domestic Relations Orders and how they may pertain to your case. That way you enter the divorce process fully prepared and ready to advocate for what is fair and just.