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Property Division Archives

Reasons to have a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement

Pennsylvania couples who are planning their marriages might want to consider a prenuptial agreement, and they might want to think about a post-nuptial agreement if they are already married. While it may be impossible to imagine a divorce before even getting married, a prenup can actually strengthen a relationship and can protect people later if the marriage falters.

Inheritances, IRAs and divorce property division

While inheritances are often considered separate property when Pennsylvania couples go through a divorce, inherited IRAs are playing a growing role in property division. Individual retirement accounts and other types of retirement funds are often some of the most significant assets held by a couple. Even when the couple has significant wealth, these accounts are often some of the largest, and their division requires a specific court order in order to protect their tax-favored status.

Your property division checklist

There are so many things to keep track of in a divorce that it can be easy to forget what's important. It seems like each area has its potential issues and problems that estate planners have to address. Take asset division, for example. If you forget to consider capital gains tax liabilities on a valuable piece of property, you could be in serious trouble.

Closing joint bank or credit card accounts

If Pennsylvania residents want to close a joint bank account, they may be wise to get permission from the joint account holders. Good communication prior to closing the account may reduce the possibility of a misunderstanding as to where the money goes. When a couple has a joint account and decides to end their marriage, it will likely be necessary to split the money.

What to do with a house during a divorce

Some Pennsylvania residents who are getting a divorce might want to try to keep the family home. Often, this may be for emotional rather than practical reasons, and doing so may not be financially feasible. There are a number of factors that should be considered including the home's value, whether the person is employed, and whether the person can refinance or buy out the other party.

Divorce and 401(k)s

Pennsylvania residents who are considering getting a divorce should know what could happen to their 401(k). Although the retirement plan is offered to employees and is not considered a joint asset, it can be divided between employees and their spouses, even if the plan predates the marriage. However, this is only possible if certain criteria related to the Internal Revenue Code and the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 are met.

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