People often work for the better part of their adult lives so they can look forward to retiring one day. Divorce can throw a shadow over your retirement prospects - after all, an important part of the divorce process is dividing marital assets.
Retirement accounts, including government pensions, are generally considered marital assets. Even if you started working at your job before you got married, any contributions to a pension account - from you or the government - after the marriage began will be considered marital property. Pension accounts must be valued and then divided, which can present significant challenges during the divorce process.
How Can I Know the Real Value of My Pension?
A pension is different from other financial instruments, such as a 401(k). A 401(k) has a set amount of money, which grows over many years as employees and employers pay into it. After retirement, a retiree could spend down the entire balance of a 401(k). In contrast, pensions are a set amount of money paid to an employee after they retire for the remainder of their lives. Valuing a pension is a difficult and somewhat grim endeavor because it is not possible to predict how long the recipient will live....