This may not be the ideal answer, but it is a true one: it depends. In general, however, you should continue to contribute the same amount and the same percentage that you were while you were married. In other words, changing the status quo is not a good idea. Unless cash flow is an issue and there are no discretionary funds available, you should continue to participate in your employer-sponsored 401K Plan or 403B Plan or any other retirement accounts consistent with what you were doing before the divorce started.
It is important to consider the reason why continuing to make contributions is a good idea. First, it was status quo during the marriage, it makes sense not to disturb the standard of living during the marriage. Second, if your intent is to protect your 401K Plan, the opposing side will almost always argue that you have stopped contributing to your 401K Plan. Therefore, it represents no upside. Third, if you stop contributing, you would still have to provide the accounting of the funds that you are saving because you have stopped contributing. Finally, if you want your monthly budget to incorporate a contribution to a retirement account, it will be difficult for you to argue that if you voluntarily stopped contributing to it.
If you are going through a divorce, it is all too easy to get caught up by a seemingly minor point of the law. To ensure that you receive the best outcome possible, consider the assistance of an experienced family law attorney. The attorneys of Clausen & Hassan have decades of experience standing alongside those going through divorce—everything from the simplest uncontested process, to the steepest of challenges.
To schedule a free appointment, call us today at 651-647-0087 or reach out via our online contact form. I look forward to hearing from you.
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