Handling Complex QDRO Matters for Divorcing Clients in Forsyth County
Georgia law requires divorcing spouses to divide all of their marital property in an equitable manner. Even if your retirement account is in your name only, those savings are often considered to be marital property and dividing these funds can be a highly complicated matter. This process often involves Qualified Domestic Relations Orders, commonly known as QDROs, and you should have an experienced Cumming QDRO attorney handling your divorce case if retirement accounts are at issue. Contact the team at Banks, Stubbs & McFarland to discuss how we can help.
What is a QDRO?
Retirement funds will generally need to be divided as part of the marital estate and transferred from one spouse to the other. If each spouse has a retirement account with a comparable balance, they might simply cancel each other out, and each spouse retains their own account. However, if only one spouse has a retirement account, or if one spouse has significantly higher retirement savings, you will likely need to divide those funds as part of your equitable distribution of property.
You do not want to incur tax penalties that come with the early withdrawal or transfer of retirement funds, and QDROs prevent any such tax penalties. A QDRO is a document that is used to divide assets from 403(b)s, 401(k)s, or other qualified retirement plans. It designates the other spouse as an “alternative payee” and gives them the right to a specified portion of the funds.
There are hundreds of thousands of private retirement plans in the United States, and each plan has its own requirements for the form of a QDRO. The QDRO must specify the percentage or amount of benefits the alternate payee will receive, so you must determine how the funds will be divided first.
The Right QDRO Lawyer
QDROs can be issued in conjunction with property distribution or alimony orders, and you want to obtain one as part of the divorce process. While it is possible to obtain a QDRO following a divorce decree, it can take more time and money to do so. You want your attorney to identify your rights to your spouse’s retirement savings during the divorce process and help you reach a settlement agreement or obtain a court order awarding you those assets.
After the funds have been divided by agreement or court order, your attorney will ensure that the QDRO is drafted properly and accurately to ensure you receive the funds you are entitled to. The QDRO can be incorporated into your final divorce judgment and presented directly to the retirement plan provider. If, for any reason, the plan rejects the QDRO, your lawyer can address the matter.
Contact a Forsyth County, Georgia Qualified Domestic Relations Order Lawyer
Dividing retirement savings can be a complex part of a divorce, but a Cumming QDRO attorney at the law firm of Banks, Stubbs & McFarland is ready to help. We handle all aspects of complex divorces cases, so please call 770-887-1209 or contact us online to set up your consultation to learn about our services.