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Tulsa Family Law Blog

Handling Your Retirement During Divorce

You’ve worked hard for your career. You rely on your paycheck to pay your bills. A portion of your paycheck also contributes to your retirement fund. When the time comes, you will rely on your retirement plans to pay your bills.  Now that you and your spouse have decided to get a divorce, you worry about your financial stability and financial future.

As you divorce, you will need to divide your property and assets. It will be important for you to understand how your retirements fit in.

Exploring the many reasons couples may opt for a prenup

Some couples preparing to tie the knot in Oklahoma are still under the assumption that a prenuptial agreement is only something for celebrities and wealthy individuals. In reality, prenups are simply an agreement between two parties stating how assets will be divided if a divorce occurs. Without such an agreement, property and asset division post-divorce is governed by the state. Some states require a 50/50 split, while others go by equitable distribution - division based on what each individual earned or acquired during the marriage.

Other than wealth protection, there are some equally valid reasons why couples may seek the assistance of a divorce law firm to put together a prenup before exchanging "I dos." With student loans, for example, a prenup can allow for some type of compensation if the other spouse helped the loan holder pay off their debt. With cherished pets, a prenup can specify who would own Fido or Fluffy in the event of a divorce.

Cohabitation may increase odds of divorce

Cohabitation, which is common across Oklahoma and the United States, is generally considered to be a positive living arrangement by couples who are not ready to marry. However, a study produced in the Journal of Family and Marriage suggests that cohabitation may lead to higher divorce rates. The study looked at data gathered from women up to the age of 44 and analyzed divorce rates from 1970 to 2015 for first-time marriages.

Using statistics taken from the National Surveys of Family Growth, the study concluded that marriages after cohabitation had average or above-average rates of survival within the first year, but for each subsequent year of marriage after cohabitation, divorce was more likely to occur. Researchers reasoned that this was due to an increase in difficulty when navigating day-to-day problems faced by most marriages once a legal commitment had been made.

Economic prosperity could boost risk of divorce

According to a survey conducted by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, attorneys are likely to have fewer clients seeking a divorce when the economy isn't doing so well. However, when the economy strengthens, some couples in Oklahoma may be more likely to have marital troubles lead to divorce. This also appears to be true with marriages where there is a noticeable discrepancy with earnings or credit health. About 35 percent of 2,000 adults surveyed by a leading bank holding company cited money matters as the main problem with their spouse.

Not surprisingly, couples who align equally financially are less likely to end a marriage. On the other hand, the Federal Reserve Board notes that couples significantly mismatched with each other's credit scores are more likely to seek the assistance of a divorce law firm within the first five years of marriage. Wealthy couples aren't immune to divorce risks either; some well-off spouses have high monthly expenses and little or no retirement savings, which sometimes contributes to marital tension.

How good of a place is Tulsa for families?

What challenges and opportunities arise for parents when it comes to raising a family is affected by a wide range of things. This includes where their family lives. Communities vary in how family-friendly they are.

How family-friendly is Tulsa? Not as much as one might hope, a recent report suggests.

Is adultery a crime?

If you’ve discovered that your spouse has been unfaithful — there may be legal retributions. In the state of Oklahoma, adultery is grounds for divorce and for felony charges.

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