What should every family law attorney know about retirement benefits? What are the different types of retirement benefits? Why divide with a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO)? How does the family law attorney ensure survivor benefits? Does it matter whether the plan is a public or private plan?
These questions have been presented to me as a QDRO attorney on a regular basis in my twenty-plus year practice. My intent in this article is to help the family law attorney navigate and issue-spot through this complex area of law. I will focus on plans governed by federal law under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 as amended (ERISA), but I will also discuss briefly federal employee and military plans.
- ERISA and QDRO Basics
- IRAs and SEP IRAs
- The Importance of Correctly Identifying the Plan
- Defined Contribution Plans
- Defined Benefit Plans
- Survivor Benefits and Federal Public Plans
- and more