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Social Security Retirement Planning If You Are Divorced

If you are divorced, you are entitled to receive benefits on your ex-spouse’s record (even if he or she has remarried) if:

1. Your ex-spouse is entitled to Social Security benefits. If your ex-spouse worked for ten years or more, then he or she is eligible to receive retirement benefits as early as age 62. Also, if your ex-spouse is receiving Social Security Disability benefits, you may qualify for benefits; and

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Divorced? Is your Retirement Plan Beneficiary Really Who You Think it Is?

This is not a typical topic for a blog post during a holiday week, but nonetheless it is an issue of which we should all be aware.

Going through a divorce can be analogous to the loss of a loved one. The emotional side-effects can be very difficult and the division of assets can be daunting. The negotiation of a QDRO (qualified domestic relation order, the document which directs the Plan trustee to divide the retirement account) is often yet another skirmish in the battle that is a divorce. Once the dust has settled and the divorce order and QDRO have been finalized, many people forget to take the final step: removing his or her former spouse as beneficiary of the retirement account.

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The ABCs of QDROs

When a couple is going through a divorce, one important consideration is the division of assets, which frequently includes retirement assets such as 401(k)s, pensions, and other plans.  To effectuate the division of these plans, typically a specific document called a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) is required.  The individual requirements of a QDRO are often complicated and very plan-specific.  It is typically advised that QDROs be drafted by a knowledgeable attorney who has training and experience in this area.

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How I Solved The Problem With Prenups

Today, parents’ delight at the announcement of their child’s engagement is often followed by concerns about the future success of the marriage. Given that almost 50 percent of all first marriages end in divorce those concerns are well founded. Where there are substantial or just important family assets such as a business, vacation home, retirement fund or other accumulated wealth there is a heightened awareness of the emotional and financial costs of a failed marriage.

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