Retirement Accounts and Divorce: How to Make the Division

retirement accountsYou have probably considered all of your assets before you even made the decision to file for divorce. But now that things have become more real and the end goal is in mind, you have to consider many other aspects – including your retirement accounts. Retirement accounts are generally viewed as marital assets and, because of this, they will be divided between spouses in the event of a divorce.

How Division Works 

When it comes to dividing retirement accounts, generally the first place to start is to consider the value. This is usually determined by the amount of money in the account by a certain date. There are two different ways that an account is typically divided, either by the ‘Immediate Offset Method’ or the ‘Deferred Distribution Method.’ With an IOM, the present value of the account will be compared to the value of other marital property between you and your spouse. Under the DDM, the benefits are only divisible under the plan at a future date.

The judge in your case will consider many factors when you are going through this process as to not make it unfair to any involved parties. They will, of course, look at the length of the marriage. Retirement plans are usually split 50-50 if the marriage was long. If it was a short marriage, you are typically not going to receive half of the retirement of your spouse. And, if your spouse earned some of that retirement before you were married, it will probably be considered separate property and might not become a part of your divorce so that it is protected due to it being earned by them.

Splitting the retirement money just may be one of the most complicated procedures in any divorce, which is why you should have an attorney to help you every step of the way during this complex process. We can help at the Montes Law Firm, where your case is important to us. Call us today to find out how we can help in the midst of your divorce.