Barbara J. Katzenberg, Attorney at Law
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Divorce agreement: Avoiding tax penalties re retirement funds

The end of a marriage can have a significant impact on a person's future. Individuals in Massachusetts who are going through a similar situation may wish to secure a favorable divorce agreement, but with numerous crucial areas to cover, the process can be complex. With the potential gravity of the outcome of a divorce, seeking guidance in the initial stages is advisable.

Along with being an emotionally stressful experience, divorce can also be financially challenging as well. Since the division of marital assets will inherently have an affect on one's financial standing, pursuing the best possible outcome could be crucial to the future. However, the process may involve more than just picking and choosing which assets to pursue, especially if retirement accounts are a factor.

Dividing retirement accounts can be difficult and, without taking the proper precautions, can lead to undesirable consequences. A person might want to ensure that the correct documentation is obtained, such as a Qualified Domestic Relations Order and/or a divorce decree, before attempting to divide such accounts. Failing to take the necessary measures beforehand could result in potentially devastating tax fees and/or penalties.

With a great deal to consider during the end of a marriage, one may find it beneficial to seek assistance in navigating the process. By speaking with a family law attorney, a client in Massachusetts could obtain insight and advice on the process of dividing marital assets, along with other crucial aspects of divorce. An attorney can cover a client's concerns and needs and assist in pursuing an equitable divorce agreement during subsequent proceedings.

Source: marketwatch.com, "Getting Divorced? How to avoid tax pitfalls when splitting up retirement accounts", Bill Bischoff, Aug. 1, 2017

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