Orange County Division of Retirement Benefits Lawyer
If you are closing in on your retirement years, a divorce can be particularly complicated and difficult, and not just emotionally. For anyone over the age of fifty who is seeking or contemplating a dissolution in the state of California, it is absolutely imperative to be concerned about your savings for retirement. In every divorce, the property and assets that the spouses have collected during the marriage will be divided and distributed by a court order unless the couple can reach agreements on their own. That includes homes, automobiles, and all other properties and assets that have been defined as community property.
In general, however, some of the more considerable assets that many couples are likely to hold include retirement funds and benefits they received during the course of their employment. If you are divorcing or anticipating a dissolution in southern California, and especially if you and/or your spouse have substantial retirement savings, consult at once with an experienced Orange County divorce attorney at the Bayati Law Group. You will need to be represented by an experienced divorce lawyer who sees to it that all of the marital assets of your estate – including any retirement accounts and income– are accurately divided and fairly distributed.
Although we have the experience, endurance, and ability to handle the most acrimonious divorce situations, at the Bayati Law Group, we prefer cooperation to resolve the community property division disputes that can emerge during a divorce proceeding. The issue of pensions and retrial benefits can be quite contentious in dissolution proceedings, especially when divorce potentially means a future of financial uncertainty for at least one of the divorcing spouses.
RETIREMENT ACCOUNTS MAY HOLD SUBSTANTIAL RESOURCES
A good California divorce lawyer can make certain that you receive a fair and equitable share of the marital assets after your divorce, but one of the most frequently overlooked assets in a divorce is a spouse’s retirement account. Retirement accounts may hold substantial resources that have been set aside for the future, and in California, both parties in a divorce usually have the right to those resources to settle spousal support or property division disputes.
The divorce rate among older adults in the United States actually doubled between 1990 and 2009, and in 2009, about one in every four divorces involved couples over the age of fifty. If you’re divorcing well before the age of fifty, you may not have a retirement account asset to worry about. But if you’re over fifty and divorcing, there’s no question that retirement accounts, pension plans, and Social Security will factor significantly into your divorce, but even if you’re not nearing retirement age, retirement accounts often represent a substantial amount of a couple’s net worth, so those accounts must be addressed during the division of property and assets.
If you are seeking or anticipating a divorce in southern California, consult right away with an experienced Orange County divorce attorney at the Bayati Law Group. The Bayati Law Group aggressively fights for and defends the financial rights and interests of our clients throughout their divorce proceedings. Our attorneys routinely handle contested divorces with difficult financial aspects and complications.
WHAT IS MARITAL PROPERTY AND WHAT ISN’T?
In the state of California, pension and retrial benefits accumulated during a marriage are in most cases treated as marital property and divided between both spouses in a divorce. However, if a spouse enters the marriage with money already in a 401K, for example, those funds are typically considered separate, personal property, and as such are not included in the division of assets. While California law requires that all marital assets are to be divided fairly, it’s vital to understand that only that portion of a retirement plan that is earned during the marriage is subject to division and distribution in a divorce. If you put funds into a business or personal retirement account prior to the marriage, these are not considered community property.
In the state of California, a number of legal rules govern how retirement benefits are to be divided in a divorce. Some retirement assets may be divided as soon as the divorce is finalized by liquidating an investment account or by withdrawing the money from an employer-sponsored savings plan. Other employee retirement accounts cannot be liquidated until retirement or some other age limit. An experienced California divorce attorney at the Bayati Law Group can evaluate and then explain how your own or your spouse’s retirement benefits will be dealt with in your own divorce proceeding.
Unfortunately, dividing retirement accounts and pension plans can be quite complicated, fraught with a number of tax implications, and quite often mishandled by insufficiently experienced divorce lawyers. In southern California, if you are involved in a divorce or anticipating a divorce and the division of retirement benefits is a potential matter of dispute, seek help promptly from a qualified and experienced Orange County division of retirement benefits lawyer at the Bayati Law Group. We are thoroughly familiar with handling complicated retirement benefit issues for our divorce clients and can protect you and offer the assistance you need during this challenging process.
HOW RETIREMENT BENEFITS CAN BE HANDLED
The division of retirement benefits in a divorce proceeding can be handled in a number of ways. In some divorce cases, it may become necessary to bring in an actuary or some other financial expert to help determine the actual cash value of a particular pension benefit. In other divorces, the two spouses may simply agree to waive their legal rights to one another’s retirement benefits. This is especially common if both spouses work and can maintain their standard of living without one having to pay the other. Time and money can be saved – and aggravation can be avoided – when divorcing spouses can reach an agreement regarding retirement benefits and any other jointly-owned assets or properties.
It’s also possible that one party may request to give up his or her share of the other’s pension in exchange for a higher amount of alimony or support, or in exchange for a greater portion of the remaining marital property. The advice of a skilled divorce attorney with the Bayati Law Group can help you determine the strategy that’s best for you regarding the division of retirement benefits in your own dissolution proceeding.
WE HELP YOU CHOOSE THE BEST LEGAL OPTIONS
If you need legal guidance and representation regarding the division of retirement benefits and other assets in a divorce, or if you simply need legal advice to help you plan for your future, an experienced Orange County division of retirement benefits lawyer at the Bayati Law Group is available to offer an assessment of your situation, to discuss the full range of your legal options, and to help you make the right decisions for yourself and your future.
Every Bayati Law Group client and new prospective client is treated with complete respect and is extended every possible professional courtesy. It is our policy to return every client phone call and e-mail promptly to ensure you receive the services you need. You can schedule a consultation appointment today to speak with an experienced Orange County divorce attorney at the Bayati Law Group by calling (949) 798-5700 or by completing the form on the contact page of this web site. You can also visit this contact page to see a map with driving directions to our office. The Bayati Law Group serves clients in the Orange County community and throughout the southern California area.