How Are IRAs Divided in a Divorce?

Getting a divorce is a difficult time in many people’s lives. No matter the reason for the divorce, you may mourn the ending of the relationship. This emotional and mental toll can be exacerbated by divorce proceedings during which both you and your spouse are trying to decide how to separate your property and which asset belongs to whom.

Divorce laws in Iowa are complex, and understanding how your property may be divided can be confusing. Dividing property in Iowa after a marriage can be tedious, with both you and your spouse staking your claim to what you believe is your separate property and what you believe you are owed from the marital property. A skilled Iowa divorce attorney can help you navigate these murky waters and help you get your fair share of the marital assets in your divorce.

IRA account

How Are IRAs Divided in a Divorce?

You and your spouse may have had your own property when you first met and decided to get married. You both may have acquired property together during your marriage. Part of the difficulty in divorce is now separating your property. Property is anything that can be bought or sold. Not only does property include homes and cars, but it also includes businesses, pensions, and retirement accounts.

Some states are shared property states, meaning that in the event of a divorce, all property is divided 50/50 between spouses. Iowa, however, is an “equitable distribution” state. Any property you and your spouse had separately before your marriage and any property you both acquired during your marriage, with the exception of gifts and inheritances, is considered marital property and will be divided in a fair and equitable way.

When deciding who gets what in the divorce, including how to divide an IRA, the court will look at several factors. Your and your spouse’s income will be considered, as will the future earning capacity of both parties. Also included in the factors to be reviewed in your divorce case will be the value of all property the two of you own.

For example, an equitable division might be that a spouse with a high income is awarded the home and car in the divorce, and a higher portion of the family IRA is awarded to their spouse. Fair and equitable division refers to the fair distribution of the value of all property, not equal distribution. Any portion of the IRA that was earned prior to the marriage and any that was earned after marriage is considered marital property.

In order to divide an IRA without adverse tax consequences, you’ll need a court order known as a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO). The QDRO could be part of a divorce decree or part of a domestic relations order about child support or marital property rights.

symbols of divorce

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At Arenson Law Group, PC, we believe in being innovative and progressive in our approach to the law and how we represent our clients. Our attorneys have decades of experience representing clients in business and corporate law matters, real estate, estate planning, litigation, and many family law matters. We’ve successfully represented clients throughout Iowa in Buchanan, Jones, Black Hawk, Cedar, Johnson, Benton, and Linn counties in their legal matters.

When it comes to family law, our attorneys are committed to serving our clients. We have vast knowledge and years of experience in family law issues, including divorce and division of property. We are admitted to practice law in the state of Iowa and are members of the Iowa State Bar Association.

Contact Arenson Law Group, PC Today

Dealing with a divorce is hard enough without having to worry about how you’re going to leave your marriage with your fair share of the property you once shared with your spouse. You don’t have to go through this alone. The experienced divorce attorneys of Arenson Law Group, PC are here to represent you in your divorce and help you get what you believe you are owed.

We are committed to advocating for your best interests, and we’re compassionate about what you’re going through. Call us today at (319) 363-8199 to speak with one of our divorce attorneys about your case or contact us online.