Stay on track for your future plans after a divorce | SunTrust Resource Center

Living in Retirement

Stay on track for your future plans after a divorce

We all know divorce is an emotional experience. Deciding who gets the house and how other assets are divided tops the list of questions in many divorces. Too often, though, at least one important step gets skipped: reevaluating the family’s financial goals.

“Most families start with one plan, but after a divorce there could be one for each spouse and even one for the children,” says Tony Austreng, a financial advisor with SunTrust Investment Management in Atlanta.

Your retirement plans are an integral part of your overall financial goals. You’ll put those plans at risk if you don’t take the right actions during a divorce. That’s because for most couples, retirement accounts and pension plans make up a considerable portion of their net worth, and splitting these assets can be complicated.

Here are three ways you can help make sure that your retirement plans stay on track.

1. Get advice

The very first thing you should do: Sit down with a financial planner to review your individual objectives, Austreng advises. Your retirement outlook will depend on how your retirement assets—401(k)s and IRAs—will be split. For instance, money contributed to retirement accounts during a marriage is typically considered marital property, but retirement savings accumulated before marriage will typically be considered that spouse’s personal property. With the help of your financial planner, you can establish a savings strategy that helps you better pursue long-term financial goals such as retirement.

2. Get your share of benefits

The prospect of divorce can be especially daunting if you were relying on a spouse’s pension plan to support your retirement goals. Reaching an agreement to receive a share of those benefits should be an important part of the divorce proceedings. And don’t forget about Social Security—if a couple is married for at least 10 years, a spouse is entitled to spousal benefits after a divorce.

3. Keep saving

You may have planned on travelling in retirement or even buying a second home. But without the benefit of sharing expenses with a spouse, your individual retirement costs may be higher than you initially estimated. “In most cases retirement after a divorce will require additional savings,” Austreng says. As you reassess your goals and adjust to life on your own, begin contributing as much as possible to your retirement accounts. You may have to adjust your expectations, but you can still plan for an enjoyable retirement by managing your spending and continuing to save.

While divorce is often a long and expensive process, Austreng cautions against dipping into your retirement savings to pay for it. “If couples can get together for their own benefit and sit down with a financial planner and attorney as they separate their finances, they can make sure their retirement goals remain intact,” he says.

This content does not constitute legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment advice. You are encouraged to consult with competent legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment professionals based on your specific circumstances. We do not make any warranties as to accuracy or completeness of this information, do not endorse any third-party companies, products, or services described here, and take no liability for your use of this information.

Related

Investment and Insurance Products:

Are Not FDIC or any other Government Agency Insured   Are Not Bank Guaranteed  May Lose Value 

© 2018 SunTrust Banks, Inc

equal housing logoSunTrust Bank is an Equal Housing Lender. Member FDIC

equal housing logoEqual Housing Lender. SunTrust Mortgage, Inc

SunTrust, SunTrust Mortgage, SunTrust PortfolioView, SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, SunTrust Premier Program, AMC Pinnacle, AMC Premier, Access 3, Signature Advantage Brokerage, Custom Choice Loan and SunTrust SummitView are federally registered service marks of SunTrust Banks, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Services provided by the following affiliates of SunTrust Banks, Inc.: Banking products and services are provided by SunTrust Bank, Member FDIC. Trust and investment management services are provided by SunTrust Bank, SunTrust Delaware Trust Company and SunTrust Banks Trust Company (Cayman) Limited. Securities, brokerage accounts and insurance (including annuities) are offered by SunTrust Investment Services, Inc., a SEC registered broker-dealer, member FINRA, SIPC, and a licensed insurance agency. Investment advisory services are offered by SunTrust Advisory Services, Inc., a SEC registered adviser. GFO Advisory Services, LLC is a SEC registered investment adviser that provides investment advisory services to a group of private investment funds and other non-investment advisory services to affiliates. Mortgage products and services are provided by SunTrust Mortgage, Inc.

SunTrust Mortgage, Inc. - NMLS #2915, 901 Semmes Avenue, Richmond, VA 23224, 1-800-634-7928. CA: licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Residential Mortgage Lending Act, IL: Illinois Residential Mortgage Licensee #MB-989, Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, 100 W. Randolph, Suite 900, Chicago, IL 60601, 1-888-473-4858, MA: Mortgage Lender license #-ML-2915, NJ: Mortgage Banker License - New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance, NY: Licensed Mortgage Banker—NYS Department of Financial Services, and RI: Rhode Island Licensed Lender.

"SunTrust Advisors" may be officers and/or associated persons of the following affiliates of SunTrust Banks, Inc.: SunTrust Bank, our commercial bank, which provides banking, trust and asset management services; SunTrust Investment Services, Inc., a registered broker-dealer, which is a member of FINRA and SIPC, and a licensed insurance agency, and which provides securities, annuities and life insurance products; SunTrust Advisory Services, Inc., a SEC registered investment adviser which provides Investment Advisory services.

SunTrust Private Wealth Management, International Wealth Management, Business Owner Specialty Group, Sports and Entertainment Group, and Legal and Medical Specialty Groups and GenSpring are marketing names used by SunTrust Bank, SunTrust Banks Trust Company (Cayman) Limited, SunTrust Delaware Trust Company, SunTrust Investment Services, Inc., and SunTrust Advisory Services, Inc.

SunTrust Bank and its affiliates do not accept fiduciary responsibility for all banking and investment account types offered. Please consult with your SunTrust representative to determine whether SunTrust and its affiliates have agreed to accept fiduciary responsibility for your account(s) and if you have completed the documentation necessary to establish a fiduciary relationship with SunTrust Bank or an affiliate. Additional information regarding account types and important disclosures may be found at www.suntrust.com/investmentinfo.

SunTrust Robinson Humphrey is the trade name for the corporate and investment banking services of SunTrust Banks, Inc. and its subsidiaries, including SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc., member FINRA and SIPC.