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Older divorcees need to protect possessions

Baby boomer Oklahomans who are facing the end of their marriages may need to take unique precautions to safeguard their possessions. According to survey data gathered by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, retirement funds and pension assets were some of the most highly contested assets in divorces. With divorce rates rising among the over-50 crowd, it's important that these individuals consider means of protecting their chosen assets.

One important factor for elderly individuals to think about concerns the kinds of retirement accounts they possess. Couples with IRAs and 401(k)s may discover, for instance, that due to their income disparities, these accounts aren't of equal value to each party. Their separation agreements should be drafted with due consideration for each party's future tax obligations. Couples should also think about who the beneficiaries of each account are and review whether they want to change these designations following the end of their marriage. Experts maintain that dividing retirement plans is often fairer than trading complete accounts.

Couples are advised against wantonly exchanging retirement plans for real estate and other assets. In the long run, the maintenance costs associated with family homes and similar properties may not be worth the sentimental or fiscal rewards of ownership.

Going through a high asset divorce can pose unique challenges. In addition to having to provide for themselves, ex-couples may have to attend to the needs of offspring or make special dispensations for a large number of distinct assets that have their own legal and tax ramifications. These properties may include business holdings as well as personal goods, and dealing with them properly might demand prolonged negotiations. Having the assistance of a lawyer could make the process run more smoothly.

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