Divorce & Retirement

A divorce can upend one's financial security. To greater or lesser degrees, one's assets become subject to division. Many are compelled to devote substantial resources to supporting their former spouse, as well as any minor children. Young couples and older couples alike worry greatly about how divorce can affect their retirement.

The legal team at Hartley Law Office, LLC, has a great deal of experience helping individuals in Dayton and throughout Montgomery County protect themselves against divorce's long-term financial risks. Our understanding of Ohio divorce law is thorough, and we have a unique understanding of how to leverage it to our clients' advantage.

What Happens To 401(K)s, Roth IRAs, Pensions And Other Assets?

Unless there is a valid legal agreement stating otherwise, you are probably entitled, upon divorce, to a share of the balance of your spouse's employment-sponsored retirement plan. This includes 401(k)s, Roth IRAs, pensions, military pensions and similar holdings. (Conversely, your spouse is likely entitled to a percentage of your retirement plan.)

Yet many people, especially older spouses, fear that they will be unable to obtain their fair share of such assets. How, after all, can one compel one's former spouse — or their employer — to make the requisite payments?

Qualified Domestic Relations Orders (QDROs)

In most cases, a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO) is used to ensure the rightful distribution of retirement assets. QDROs are overseen by the courts — that is, they are legally enforceable. The assets included in a QDRO can be used to pay child support, alimony and related considerations to one's former spouse, one's child or other dependents. In essence, a QDRO provides specific instructions to the pension plan regarding what percentage of the plan's benefits will go to alternate payees.

We're Here To Address Your Concerns

Even with the protections afforded by QDROs and the legal system, many individuals worry that divorce will upend their retirement plans. Certain concessions and setbacks may be unavoidable, but in most situations, solutions are available.

To discuss your questions and concerns with a lawyer, reach out to our firm today. You can call us at 937-684-9271 or schedule an appointment online.