Division of a Pension or Retirement Plan in Rhode Island Divorce Cases


Although you may have been the one working and earning a pension, under Rhode Island law, a pension or retirement account earned during the course of a marriage is considered a marital asset. That means the value of that retirement account must be considered when arriving at a property settlement agreement.

Dividing a retirement account properly takes a bit of work. Your attorney will want to ensure that the division is completed correctly so that there is no early-withdrawal penalty or tax consequences.

Another consideration: If some of the money in the pension fund was earned by the partner before marriage, it is not a marital asset. That pre-marriage money, and the interest earned on it, should remain the separate property of the earner.

Warwick divorce attorney Paul J. Ferns understands the legal requirements regarding 401Ks, pension funds, and complex investments that must be divided in a property settlement agreement. He will ensure your agreement is thorough, accurate, fair and reflective of your goals.

Get legal help you can rely on. Contact Warwick divorce attorney Paul J. Ferns or call 401-714-5526 to schedule a free initial consultation.

When Can a Spouse Access Funds from a Pension

It sometimes happens that a person who feels the division of a pension is particularly unfair will try to prevent the former spouse from receiving their share of the pension by remaining on the job after they could have retired.

Rhode Island law doesn't work that way, however.

The former spouse is entitled to the amount of the pension that they would have received on the date that the worker was eligible to retire. If the worker chooses not to retire – and therefore, not to access the pension – the worker must begin paying the former spouse the amount of money they are entitled to from the pension but from their own pocket.

Yes, the pension funds stay in the pension, but the former spouse does get his or her monthly payment.

Attorney Ferns will help you understand Rhode Island divorce law and how it will impact the division of your assets and debts. Get the legal help you need and the caring, personal attention you deserve. Contact Warwick divorce lawyer Paul J. Ferns: 401-714-5526.

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