Divorce and Your Federal Retirement Benefits and Pay Planning

No matter where you are in your personal life, it’s important to know and understand your CSRS or FERS benefits and how they may be affected in the event of a divorce.

It’s no secret that going through a divorce is a stressful and difficult process. From splitting up assets to the emotional toll it takes, divorce is complicated and distressing. This especially rings true for government employees and retirees who are trying to navigate the complexities of their federal benefits. While no one goes into a marriage hoping for it to end in divorce, there are steps you can take now to be ready for whatever life may throw your way in the future.

Educate Yourself

No matter where you are in your personal life, it’s important to know and understand your CSRS or FERS benefits and how they may be affected in the event of a divorce. You’ll also want to familiarize yourself with obtaining a court order acceptable for processing (COAP), as this is a crucial step toward ensuring your retirement benefits are paid correctly, as agreed upon in your divorce settlement.

You will also want to be prepared for changes to more than just your retirement savings. Federal benefits such as health, social security, thrift savings plan, and FEGLI could all be affected by a divorce. Educating yourself on the rules of all of your benefits will help ease confusion and stress during an already trying time.

Lean on Experts

When you're seeking a divorce lawyer, be sure to look for one who specializes in divorces for federal employees or retirees. Learn how familiar they are with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Handbook and ask questions to understand their experience in processing these types of divorces.

Finally, trust in the help of a counselor along the way. Whether you're in the process of a divorce or simply want to know and understand your federal benefits, an Insight Benefits Counselors (IBC) trusted expert can provide the answers and resources you need to feel more confident in your knowledge. Contact us to get started today.

 

Read the full original article at: www.govexec.com

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