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Can a Plan or Plan Administrator under ERISA be sued for mismanaging a QDRO?


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My Name is Ms. Gloria White. I reside in Houston. Texas and Retired

I was in Pay status, receiving monthly distributions from my separate property annuity, when my spouse filed for divorce.  The divorce was finalized.

I 1/2 year later, he filed a Dro as an Alternate payee on my Retirement Plan.  It was approved but he manipulated the language in the final divorce decree, omitted the valuation date of our marriage and had the Dro signed by a substitute judge.  With the Plans' qualifying approval , he started receiving 1/2 of my monthly distribution.  It was a Defined Benefit of 50% joint and Survivorship.  I did name him as the death beneficiary after my demise.    Not as an Alternate payee!   I was never served and did not sign the QDRO.

Can the Plan or Plan Administrator  be sued for mismanaging the Qdro or does ERISA precludes them from being sued?

 Please answer ASAP today

Ms. Gloria White

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Did the administrator administer the DRO in a manner inconsistent with said order?

It is not up to the administrator to analyze the DRO for fairness.  There is a checklist they go through.  There are some items that MUST be in a DRO and some items that simply CANNOT be in there.  Once all the boxes are ticked, the administrator takes steps to satisfy the DRO as written.

You should consult with your attorney as to the next steps.

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QKA, QPA, CPC, ERPA

Two wrongs don't make a right, but three rights make a left.

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1 hour ago, Ms. Gloria White said:

It was approved but he manipulated the language in the final divorce decree, omitted the valuation date of our marriage and had the Dro signed by a substitute judge.

If you think there was fraud involved, and can prove it, then hiring an attorney to sue your ex and have the QDRO rescinded may be your only recourse. A QDRO need not be signed by the litigants as far as I know, and if all the pieces that qualify a DRO as a QDRO are there then the Plan Administrator is required to follow. There is nothing you state that implies the Plan Administrator did anything wrong.

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  • david rigby changed the title to Can a Plan or Plan Administrator under ERISA be sued for mismanaging a QDRO?

It sounds like your ex was awarded 1/2 of your payments in the divorce under the DRO that the administrator then determined to be a QDRO and started making separate interest payments. I offer no opinion as to whether or not this was correct, just trying to get a handle on what actually happened. Have you discussed this with your divorce attorney and whomever drafted the DRO?

As the two above mention the Plan Administrator is following a court order that was issue to the Plan, if the DRO meets the requirements of a QDRO they have no option but to implement what the order states.

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