Many New Yorkers have spent their lifetimes working hard and building up their wealth so that one day they may retire and enjoy a less stressful existence. From savings accounts to retirement plans to individual investments their financial assets may be just enough for them to leave their jobs and live off of their prior earnings until the ends of their lives.

Retirement can be require careful planning but one major life event can throw even the most detailed retirement structure into chaos – divorce. When a couple divorces the parties must identify what property they own separate and apart from each other and what property they jointly own. Property that is jointly owned by the partners to and ending marriage must be divided between them.

As many financial assets are held by both partners to a marriage they can become subject to division during the property settlement process of a divorce. Suddenly a person may see their bountiful nest egg split in two and with their remaining portion insufficient to support their retirement needs. Their retirement savings may have been enough to care for both partners if they continued to live in a single household but may quickly dwindle as they separate their lives and move into retirement apart from each other.

No one should put off a divorce because they do not think they can afford it but preparing financially before beginning the process may help an individual set themselves up for solid financial footing once the divorce process is over. Advocate LLP, a New York law firm, is available to consult with prospective divorce clients and to advise them on the property laws of the state that may impact their assets and wealth if they choose to end their marriages.