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Many divorcees don't consider retirement benefits

Some relationships last a lifetime, but this is not true of them all. For those that don't, divorce often becomes an attractive option and one chosen by many couples each year in South Carolina. There are several matters to take into account during the divorce process, from the division of property to who receives custody of children and pets. However, one matter many couples forget is that of retirement assets.

A study carried out by Securian Financial Group found that 31 percent of those surveyed who were people divorcing after being married for 10 or more years were unaware that they could have claimed part of their spouse's retirement benefits. Retirement assets are often more valuable than alimony during divorce proceedings as alimony is taxable.

It is worth noting that you may also be entitled to around half of your former spouse's Social Security benefits, depending on your age and the length of your marriage. Furthermore, you will need to come to a decision about who keeps your house, if you have one. It is important to bear in mind that houses may depreciate and can also be costly to maintain. One option may be to sell the property and divvy up the proceeds.

Sometimes a fresh start is the healthiest option for both parties, giving them a chance at taking their lives in new directions. Even so, couples in South Carolina should be prepared to take time over their divorce, ensuring that they have covered everything thoroughly. An attorney can advise you on what you may have missed and may be able to help you secure an agreement that will stand the test of time.

Source: Forbes, "The Big Money Mistake Divorcing Women Make," Kerry Hannon, July 3, 2014

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