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Will Divorcing Impact My Retirement Plans?


When a marriage ends, it impacts all of your finances, including retirement investments. For many couples, their retirement accounts are their largest assets, which could include 401k plans, 403b accounts, and pensions. Even if you feel your retirement accounts are yours, because they are connected to your work history, the reality is that in the state of Florida any property acquired over the course of a marriage is subject to equitable split rules.

If you are wondering what an equitable split will mean for your retirement assets, connect with a Tampa family lawyer. An experienced attorney will review all the facts of your situation. An equitable split does not necessarily mean each spouse retains 50% of an asset. All the details of your marital assets and debts will need to be assessed.

How Long Have You Been Married?

One of the details that an attorney will want to know when they meet with you to discuss possible divorce outcomes is how long you have been married. The length of your marriage will impact a few different areas of your divorce agreement and retirement options moving forward.

For example, in order to access Social Security benefits connected to your spouse’s income, the marriage must last for 10 years. If you are married for less than the 10 years required, you will not be able to file for benefits as a former spouse. Because of this, if you are close to retirement, the date your divorce is finalized could be an important decision.

Will You Experience an Income Shift?

Untangling marital finances can lead to the realization that one or both individuals will need to adjust their household budget when they choose to separate and divorce. This could lead to one individual no longer being able to contribute the same amount to a work retirement plan because they will be juggling childcare expenses and mortgage payments. Every line item of your finances will need to be analyzed and once a full picture comes into view, a fair divorce agreement can be negotiated.

While divorce is a very personal decision and the process can be incredibly emotional, thinking through financial decisions, such as retirement objectives, is a way to protect yourself today and into the future. Retirement plan distributions can be negotiated, you do not have to blindly accept terms brought forward by your spouse or their attorney. A Tampa family lawyer will listen closely to where you are at and where you want to be and strategize next steps.

Do you want to know what your retirement will look like should you choose to end your marriage? Knowing the facts is essential, and legal professionals can guide you through the process and inform you of possible outcomes. A skilled Tampa family lawyer can help you build the life you want now and into the future. Meet with the legal team at Blair H. Chan, III to discuss your retirement plans and post-divorce goals. Call 813-202-7831 today to schedule an initial case consultation.

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