There is something about doing things for oneself that brings a sense of accomplishment. Unfortunately, there are certain projects that going the DIY route is probably not the wisest choice. Divorce, for example, is something with which Georgia residents may want to consider seeking assistance from an experienced attorney.
One reason a DIY divorce is a bad idea is that one may not be aware of all the fees and taxes that may come with dividing certain assets. Retirements accounts are a great example of this. If the proper forms are not filed when retirement accounts are split or drained in divorce, one or both parties may be on the hook for early distribution fees and taxes. These can really add up depending on the amount in the retirement account.
So, what form is needed to prevent having to pay out a large sum of cash for dividing a retirement account? A qualified domestic relations order, QDRO for short, needs to be filed. There is generally a fee for processing this form, but it will be substantially less than the fees and taxes one may have to pay if this step is not completed.
If going the DIY divorce route, things like the QDRO form may be missed simply because a couple may not be aware that it exists or understands why it will benefit them. If they do and they make a mistake in filling out the document, they may have to pay extra fees in order to refile. At the end of the day, even if one does not wish to have legal counsel participate in every step of the divorce process, Georgia residents can turn to seasoned family law attorneys who can review proposed settlements before they are submitted to court in order to make sure that they truly serve the best interests of the client.
Source: Forbes, “IRA Withdrawal Penalty A Cost Of Do-It-Yourself Divorce“, Peter J Reilly, June 30, 2017