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Retirement account division can be painful in baby boomer divorce

Couples work hard for decades to save for retirement. While there may have been a few setbacks and some costly economic times, many people still hope to retire according to their plan. When people get into their fifties or sixties, they could decide that their marriage is no longer working, and they don't want to continue it.

This realization can be liberating, emotional, and raise questions about a person's financial future. If a person is just years away from retirement, a divorce might cause the person to rethink their retirement plans. After all, the retirement plan that most couples build is based on them staying together, having two incomes and joint expenses. After a divorce, each spouse will have to find their own housing, pay their own utilities and other monthly expenses. Soon, that retirement account that once looked like a nice nest egg is looking a little scrambled.

Looking at a retirement account when going through a divorce might cause some people to be overwhelmed. The money they put into the account might be split with their spouse after a divorce, and they might think they will never be able to retire. It is important that people who are close to retirement and contemplating divorce seek professional help with their finances.

An experienced divorce attorney can work with the person and their financial advisors to come up with a plan, which can hopefully be incorporated into a divorce settlement or agreement that will keep the person on track for retirement. If the person isn't able to retire when they had hoped to, a plan can be made to get them as close as possible to their retirement target date.

Source: USA Today, "Boomer divorce: A costly retirement roadblock," Rodney Brooks, Feb. 26, 2013

-Our law firm handles property division and baby boomer divorce cases in Middlesex County. Please visit our website to learn more.

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