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What Is A QDRO?

The term “QDRO” stands for Qualified Domestic Relations Order. A QDRO is a special type of court order that divides retirement plan benefits between parties in a dissolution or legal separation. It orders a retirement plan to pay a portion of the retirement to the other spouse.

Why Do I Need A QDRO?

In Idaho any retirement earned during the marriage is community property and subject to division in a divorce. A QDRO is required in order for a retirement plan to turn over a portion of one spouse’s retirement to the other spouse without creating adverse tax consequences.

Is A QDRO The Only Way To Divide Retirement Plan Benefits?

No. A QDRO is an order that directs the Plan to pay money to the nonparticipant spouse. Alternatively, the parties could agree that the participant will “buy-out” the nonparticipant spouse’s interest in the plan by paying the nonparticipant spouse an agreed upon sum in lieu of directing the Plan to pay the nonparticipant spouse.

I can help you evaluate your options for dividing retirement benefits upon divorce and advise you as to the pros and cons of the different options.

It is essential to have the advice of an attorney when dealing with the division of retirement benefits. No one should attempt to divide retirement benefits without the advice of a knowledgeable attorney.