Here’s how it works
Preparing a QDRO requires extensive knowledge of federal law of retirement and pension. Most divorce attorneys outsource the preparation to specialists. Without a thorough Separation Agreement, spouses face problems if claiming benefits are ineligible under plan rules.
Survivorship benefits often narrowly restrict death benefit payments, particularly to spouses and former spouses. A QDRO specialist understands the plan’s rules and regulations, limiting the likelihood of rejection. Although many argue the QDRO can’t achieve benefits better than standard terms, the reality often holds superior rights and benefits compared with ordinary retirees.
A QDRO must be prepared, filed with the Court, and approved by plan providers before a spouse can access the benefits guaranteed under the divorce agreement. Whether a union, state or federal government or private company, the plan provider isn’t a party in the divorce proceedings. Federal law prevents transfers contemplated in most Separation Agreements if a QDRO isn’t used.
Don’t leave money on the table that you deserve. Protect your retirement years by scheduling a free consultation with an experienced QDRO attorney.
DON’T RISK LOSING YOUR RETIRMENT BY HIRING AN INEXPERINCED ATTORNEY
All pension plans are eligible, including private pension and benefit plans. These include 401(K), 403(b), 457, TIAA/CREF, and defined benefit monthly payment. Any federal and state civil service plans, military retirement pay, Railroad Retirement Plans, and IRA’s may also divide into similar orders.
Delaying a QDRO could run the risk of forfeiting all benefits awarded to you in your divorce. Should your former spouse do any of the following before the QDRO is submitted, you may lose all rights:
- Quits or is fired from their employment
- Dies or retires
- Withdraws funds from the plan before retirement
- Takes a secured loan against the plan account.
Yes, but you risk having your QDRO rejected by the plan administrator. A legally enforceable Qualified Domestic Relations Order must be approved by the plan administrator and signed by a judge. Not all family law attorneys will have the knowledge or experience in drafting a good QDRO. Blattner Family Law Group can help you prepare the QDRO and ensure that it is approved.
HERE’S A QUICK SUMMARY
Preparing a QDRO requires extensive knowledge– choose an attorney who has the experience you need.
A QDRO is required when employer-sponsored retirement plans require division.
Without this order, a former spouse will not have any rights to a spouse’s retirement benefits.
For a Qualified Domestic Relations Order to be enforceable, it must be part of the state authority’s decree or judgment order.
The division of retirement plans are routine in the divorce process but must be handled by a professional.
Not every attorney will have the expertise or experience to draft a qualifying QDRO.
This document is highly technical and incredibly difficult to prepare.
Get An Experienced Attorney Who Prepares QDROs
The QDRO isn’t Just a Compromise—It’s a Highly Specialized Document with Technical Language and Jargon
While both partners can negotiate the division and distribution, an attorney can ensure the approval and enforcement of The Qualified Domestic Relations Orders