When going through a divorce, it is easy to get caught up in the short-term. You want to know who is going to stay in the family home. You want to know how much time you will be able to have with your child. You may not be thinking about long-range issues like how your divorce is going to impact your retirement. Perhaps you should be.

Women Have Less Money In Retirement Accounts

A recent article in Slate addresses the challenges that divorcees, particularly divorced women, face when it comes to retirement. One of the biggest issues is that both unmarried and married women typically have less money in their retirement accounts than men. This is the result of a variety of factors, starting with the fact that female salaries tend to be lower. The Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement stated that the average retirement income of women is more than $10,000 less than that of men.

The average amount that a woman has in a retirement account may not be sufficient to live on after a divorce, when costs for housing and groceries can no longer be split between spouses. Matters become even more difficult for women who quit their jobs or reduced their hours to stay home and raise children. Getting back into the workforce can be challenging, and depending on age there may simply not be enough time to build a viable retirement account from the ground up.

Plan For The Future Today

The decisions you make now during your divorce can impact your future well into retirement. You must take great care to protect your separate property and to challenge any attempts your spouse makes to categorize marital property as separate. Be aware that Colorado law calls for an equitable division of marital property. Equitable does not necessarily mean equal. Depending on a variety of factors, including your age, income and earning capacity, you may be entitled to more than 50 percent. Recognize that retirement accounts are subject to division. Do not overlook spousal maintenance, formerly known as alimony, as it may be available to help you move forward.

You want to choose an attorney who understands how to guide you toward making decisions that are not only in your best interest today, but will put you in the best possible position for many years to come. You can find that attorney at Scardina Family Law.