How Do You Split Up Retirement Savings in a Divorce?

Experienced Divorce Lawyer Serving Montgomery County and the Philadelphia Metropolitan Area

Besides the home or a family-owned business, a couple’s retirement accounts are often their largest asset. In a divorce, it is important that you receive your fair share of all marital property, including retirement savings.

Before you can negotiate or litigate a fair property settlement, you need to know the value of any 401K, IRA or other retirement accounts.

At Deborah Zitomer Esquire, LLC, I have been practicing divorce and family law since 1990. I work with highly qualified accountants and other financial experts to properly value retirement funds. I work hard to ensure my clients have the information needed to make sound decisions regarding division of marital property and other complex divorce matters.

E-mail me or call me at (610) 275-8587 for more information about the division of 401K, IRA and other retirement accounts in your divorce. At your initial consultation, we can discuss strategies designed to ensure you receive your fair share of your retirement savings and other marital property.

A common misconception is that if property is in one spouse’s name, then the other spouse has no rights to that property. In the absence of a premarital agreement, the general rule in Pennsylvania is that all property acquired during the marriage — including 401k and IRA accounts — is marital property. The fact that a retirement account is in only in one spouse’s name will not prevent it from being divided in a divorce.

With almost 20 years of experience as a divorce lawyer, I can help clients with the correct valuation and fair division of the following:

  • Pension plans, including Keough pension plans, SEP plans, state pensions, and private pensions
  • Individual retirement accounts (IRAs), including traditional and Roth IRAs
  • 401K accounts
  • Other retirement savings and investments

There are several approaches to dividing 401K, IRAs, pensions and other retirement savings in a divorce. A spouse can be awarded other property (home, cash, car, etc) equal to his or her share of the retirement savings kept by the other spouse, or the account can be split between the spouses. Usually, the family court must order a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) outlining how the account is to be split between the spouses.

It is important that you also consider the tax implications related to the division of any 401K, IRA or other retirement accounts.

To schedule a meeting with me, divorce attorney Deborah Zitomer, e-mail me or call (610) 275-8587.