An amusing QDRO anectodal story.
As the date of my last child support payment bears down, which is April 1, 2017, I realize I am about to close that particularly painful chapter of my life and I find myself reflecting back on my nightmarish divorce which began in 2006 and ended in 2009 and culminated in a 3 day trial. At the time I thought my life was over and now looking back, I'm in pretty decent shape, all things considered. The divorce was mostly a nightmare, highly litigated and contested, with countless court appearances and well over $200k in combined legal fees. Not much to be amused at there. But there were some light moments, and I recall one in particular where I found myself literally laughing out loud.
A QDRO, for those who don't know, is a "Qualified Domestic Relations Order" which is a document issued by the court which instructs the parties on how a 401k retirement plan is to be distributed between the two divorcing parties.
Our QDRO was written by a 3rd party pension company that is approved and appointed by the court, it was presented to the attorneys of both parties who signed off on it and then it was given to the court for final approval and was given the stamp and seal of the court as the "final word" as to how the several hundred thousand dollars of accrued retirement benefits would be split up between my exwife and myself.
There was a lot of strong language in there to the effect of "The Plan Administrator has the ultimate say in the final distribution award" and "both parties will cooperate to their fullest extent and provide any and all documents requested by the Plan Administrator" and blah blah blah. I'm reading this document and thinking "Damn there's a lot of grey area in that 401k because many contributions were made after the date of separation and a good chunk of the 401k funds were from IRAs I had prior to the marriage and from what I've seen so far in this divorce, there are so many mistakes made by people who are supposed to know what they're doing but they are lazy, incompetent and maybe even dishonest and biased and here I am at the mercy of this Plan Administrator whose final word is not to be questioned and who will probably not properly credit me for the nonmarital contributions and there won't be anything I can do about it.
I get to the bottom of the last page of this multipage document where the various parties are defined. The plaintiff- my exwife, the defendant- me, and the all powerful Plan Administrator heretofore defined as the LLC corporation who runs my business. That LLC corporation has one and only one owner/manager who controls it, and that is.. me. I still chuckle as I recall reading that last paragraph. I was very satisfied with the Plan Administrators final ruling which was not questioned by anyone. Except for perhaps my exwife, I heard that she expected a bigger chunk of the 401k proceeds. Oh well. The ruling was fair. I know because I was completely unbiased and completely competent when I made it. (LOL).
Last edited by browser; 03-07-2017 at 01:27 PM.