Elkouri Heath, PLC


39555 Orchard Hill Place, Suite 215, Novi, MI 48375

Oakland County, MI Division of Retirement Accounts in Divorce Lawyers

Farmington Hills Retirement Accounts Divorce Lawyers

IRAs, Pensions and SEP Allocation Attorneys Serving Farmington Hills and Canton Areas

Over the last few decades, the burden of saving for retirement has fallen more on individuals than in previous generations. Employer-funded pensions, in many areas, have become all but extinct. While there are individuals in southeast Michigan with vested pensions, most people must save a portion of their pay, putting it away for their "golden years." At Elkouri Heath PLC, we realize that a divorce can dramatically impact your plans for retirement, and we are equipped to help you obtain the financial security you deserve.

Knowledgeable Lawyers for Dividing Retirement Investments

According to Michigan law, any assets or debts acquired by either spouse during your marriage are considered part of the marital estate, with rare exceptions made for gifts and inheritances. Retirement investments, pensions, and savings are no different. Any funds in a Defined Benefit Plan such as a pension or a Defined Contribution Plan such as a 401(k) or IRA are considered marital property if they were acquired during your marriage.

Determining how much of your retirement plan is subject to division can be complicated. Many such investments offer compounding interests and are funded with contributions from more than one source during your working years. Our attorneys understand the importance of working with financial analysts, planners, and other professionals to establish a proper valuation of your entire retirement savings as well as the portion subject to division.

Client Advocates in Farmington Hills

Michigan law requires all vested retirement benefits to be considered and accounted for in a divorce. Any non-vested benefits may be included if it is considered by the court to be "just and equitable." Retirement benefits can be handled in two ways. The first way is not actually a division of the benefits, but an offset. This means that the employee spouse can keep the entirety of his or her retirement package and the non-employee spouse will receive an appropriately larger share of the remaining marital assets.

The other method for addressing retirement assets involves assigning each spouse an interest in the retirement benefits. When the benefits are later dispersed, each spouse will be entitled to a portion as determined in the divorce agreement. To facilitate the division of retirement benefits, the court will usually issue a Qualified Domestic Relations Order, or QDRO, directing the plan administrator to disburse proceeds to both the employee and non-employee spouse.

We Can Help

Attorneys Susan Elkouri and Symantha Heath have been helping clients throughout Oakland and Wayne Counties for more than 20 years. We understand that a negotiated divorce agreement is often in the best interests of everyone involved, and we will work with you in creating a settlement that meets your financial needs. When necessary, however, we are also ready to litigate your case in pursuit of the favorable outcome you deserve.

If you have questions about protecting or dividing retirement benefits during your divorce, contact our office. Call 248-344-9700 for a free, no-obligation consultation at Elkouri Heath PLC today. Located in Novi, MI, we serve individuals and families in Livonia, Farmington Hills, Canton, Macomb, Livingston, Northville, Washtenaw, and the surrounding areas.

Oakland County Bar Association State Bar of Michigan Collaborative Practice Institute of Michigan WCCDBA Woman Lawyers Association of Michigan
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