You may have heard the abbreviation QDRO (pronounced “quadro”) mentioned with reference to divorce. A QDRO is a qualified domestic relations order. When you or your spouse has an employer pension plan, you are generally not allowed to transfer the funds in that account to anyone else. However, when you divorce, funds in a retirement account that were earned during marriage are marital assets and can be divided as part of the divorce. A QDRO is a court order that allows assets in the fund to be transferred to a spouse, child or former spouse as part of the divorce. What this means is that if your spouse has an employer retirement account in his or her name and the court decides you are entitled to a portion of those funds, then money can be moved out of the account to an account in your name.
A QDRO is a very specific type of document which must be carefully crafted by your attorney to meet all legal specifications. This is a very complex transaction and it often takes time for the document to be crafted and then accepted and implemented by the plan. If you receive a portion of your spouse’s account, you will need to roll it over into another account in your own name and it is essential that you talk with your attorney and your financial advisor about how to do this correctly.
DeTorres & DeGeorge is ready to discuss QDRO options with you as well as all other aspects of your divorce Call us to schedule a consultation at 908-284-6005.