Do you think that you and your spouse are on the same page when it comes to getting a divorce and dividing your assets? You may be surprised that this part of the process is more complicated than you think. Here are three things that are hard to divide when going through the divorce process:
There are many complications that can come into play when trying to separate retirement accounts. You may not be entitled to all of a spouse's 401(k) or IRA, but you are entitled to a portion of it based on the time that you were married. This is where things get complex, because there are contributions and earnings throughout the years, and it's not as simple as dividing it in half. In addition, you can't just cash out those investments at the time of the divorce, since there are penalties for doing so.
Pensions are just as complicated because you do not know the full value of the pension before retirement is official. In addition, you are also entitled to only the portion of the pension earned during the marriage, not the entire pension.
Property can be very easy to divide when it was purchased during the marriage. If a couple doesn't want to keep a large home, they can sell it and split the proceeds. However, you'll run into problems when one spouse owned the home prior to the marriage, and then the other started contributing to the mortgage, home improvements, and things of that nature later on. If someone wants to keep the house, there can be negotiations to figure out who will pay the rest of the mortgage, or how one spouse will buy out the other person's portion of the home.
In addition to things that you own, you'll need to figure out how to divide joint debts. The problem comes in when the debts feel like they belong to a specific person, such as student loans that are taken on during the marriage. There are also debts that were taken on before the marriage occurred, and joint debts, such as credit card debt. Coming up with a plan to divide your debts is going to be crucial because nobody will want to take on more debt than they feel like they deserve. However, the law may determine that those debts incurred during the marriage, no matter who caused them, are joint debts.
For more information, reach out to a local divorce attorney.Share
7 July 2021
Too many single people assume they don't need to plan their estate. My brother fell into this category, and his unexpected passing left our entire family struggling to deal with his home, belongings, and financial accounts. It took nearly three years for the courts to set up a deal because he left no paperwork detailing how he wanted his estate divided. The situation immediately convinced me to work on my own estate, even though I'm still in my early 30's and don't have children or a spouse to worry about. Since it's a little harder to pick beneficiaries and estate managers when you're single, I collected the resources I used for making my own decisions and decided to publish them here on my blog. Use these resources before talking to an estate planning attorney so you're prepared for making hard decisions.