People getting divorced in Illinois frequently worry about finances and perhaps never so much as when they are on the cusp of retirement. Pensions, investment plans, and savings accounts are the product of many years’ worth of hard work, sacrifice, and painstaking planning. The prospect of dividing assets in a divorce can be devastating. While a divorce attorney cannot guarantee a perfect outcome, having the help of an experienced firm on your side can help you mitigate the financial impact of divorce on your retirement prospects. Here are three questions to ask yourself as you gather your financial information before the divorce.
What Will Your Social Security Benefits Be?
Spouses who have been working their entire lives often have a healthy amount of Social Security waiting for them upon retirement. But for spouses who have worked only a little or not at all, a spouse’s benefits may be the best option. If you have been married for at least 10 years, you may be eligible to receive up to half of your spouse’s benefits. If your ex-spouse plans on collecting based on your work history, your benefits will not be affected.
How Does Your Retirement Plan Work?
Not every retirement plan is created equal. For example, military spouses must have been married for at least 10 years before they can claim a portion of their former spouse’s benefits. Other plans have highly specific rules that detail how benefits can be divided, including complex paperwork that must be filled out and submitted correctly. Other plans, like simple 401(k)s, can be divided using a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). Whatever the circumstances around your retirement plan may be, is important to know the specific details before divorce negotiations begin.
Have You Sought Professional Financial Advice?
While an attorney can help you negotiate and divide your assets, he or she will not be a financial planner and cannot make suggestions based on what would be best for your financial future. While you may be reluctant to spend money on a financial planner, doing so may earn or save you more money than it costs. Get professional advice and make sure you understand your financial priorities before negotiations begin.
Call a Wheaton, IL Divorce Attorney
Strategizing before your divorce begins is essential to preserving your future financial health. To get help ensuring a fair division of assets, call the DuPage County divorce attorneys with Andrew Cores Family Law Group. Our goal is to secure you the most favorable divorce decree possible while respecting your priorities and ensuring you understand all the options available to you. Call us now at 630-871-1002 and schedule a free, confidential case review.