Will filing for divorce prevent you from retiring as planned?

It can take decades to save enough money to retire comfortably. You and your spouse may have worked out a budget when you first had kids so that you would be able to retire later in life. If you get divorced, the chances are good that you and your ex will need to split your retirement savings, pensions and possibly even your Social Security retirement benefits.

Dividing your retirement savings won’t just mean negotiations or possible litigation. It will also mean a loss of some of the value of the account. Will that mean that you can no longer retire because you won’t have enough money set aside?

You can adjust your retirement plans

Splitting your retirement accounts with your ex will likely mean that you are further away from your retirement savings goal than you were a year ago. However, now those funds will only have to support one person.

You will need to rework your expectations and your budget. Some people find that a part-time job after they retire can be a great transition to offset lost savings in the divorce. Others can supplement their financial resources with Social Security benefits. Even if you didn’t work enough to accrue benefits or your benefits are substantially lower than your spouse’s, you can potentially make a claim against their account without even diminishing the benefits that they receive.

If preserving as much of your retirement savings as possible is your top priority in the divorce, you may find that compromises in other areas, like letting your spouse keep your home, allow you to achieve your goal with minimal conflict. Reviewing your finances and your retirement plans will make it easier to protect your financial future in your upcoming divorce.