Dividing retirement accounts in a divorce is a pivotal issue for many. Detailed information is needed as to what kind of retirement accounts exist (company pensions or Individual Retirement Accounts, for example) and what the balances were at the time the parties married. In addition, parties to a divorce need to consider the tax consequences of any such division.
Florida is one of a majority of states that does its best to divide assets between spouses in a manner that is fair and equitable including:
All vested and nonvested benefits, rights, and funds accrued during the marriage in retirement, pension, profit-sharing, annuity, deferred compensation, and insurance plans and programs.
It’s important to know when your retirement account(s) become available without penalties, and how much can be taken out per year. I strongly encourage parties to resolve the division of retirement accounts among themselves, either through mediation or in a settlement conference.
The insight and advice of an accountant is also helpful. In mediation, the parties have more flexibility to resolve disputes. Moreover, people tend to be more satisfied when they help make the decisions.
If you leave your retirement accounts up to the courts to divide, you may not get the result you desire. When possible, a collaborative solution works best.
It’s your retirement – take stock in how it’s divided!