Retirement Plans And North Carolina Divorces


There has been a substantial increase in the number of people over age 50 who are filing for divorce. While this brings a myriad of issues, among them is the division of retirement accounts one or both North Carolina spouses may hold.

There are many different kinds of retirement accounts, including 401(k)s, 403(b)s, military pensions, private employer plans and IRAs. Each different type of account has its own set regulations governing how it might be divided in the event of a divorce. They also all carry varying tax consequences for both the account holder and the recipient of the divided portion.

Different accounts also require different types of orders to effect the division. Dividing retirement accounts may also lead to problems for the account holders. They may find themselves left being unable to retire at the time they intended, especially when they are older at the time of their divorces. Getting help from a financial planner when a retirement account is at issue in a divorce might be smart.

If people are able to do so, they may want to try to negotiate settlement agreements instead of engaging in bitter litigation. Other divorce options include mediation and collaborative divorce. Family law attorneys will often recommend one of those alternatives as being preferable to arguing every matter, no matter how minor, in front of a judge. They may also suggest to their clients who own retirement accounts that giving up assets of roughly equal value could be a good way to ease the property division process, which can often be contentious.