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  1. I am trying to help a 50 year friend of my wife. Her deceased 2nd husband was a 50 year friend of mine. Our friend, lets call her "L", got divorced in 2001. her ex-husband worked for Dade Behring. As part of her divorce settlement there was a QDRO set up. DB instructed "Merrill Lynch/Howard Johnson & Co" (record keeper for the plan) to set up a "cash balance plan" in her name. Set up in 2001 and by 2003 had grown about 7K to a total of 55K. L moved from MD to FL for 2002, 2003, 2004. L moved back to MD in 2004. L contends she forwarded her new MD address to DB but never got any other correspondence from them in MD. After her move from FL, hurricane/flooding at the lake area, the FL address no longer exists. One of her original choices on the DB letter was to (do nothing) wait until no later than 70 1/2 to take distribution. L elected to wait till 60 and has searched everywhere for this QDRO account. Dade Behring was bought by Siemens Co somewhere in 2008-9 time frame. There is nobody at DB, they are gone. Her SSN is not listed at; Siemens, Merrill Lynch, Fidelity, Prudential, Pension Rights Center, US Dept of Laboror Pension Benefits Guarantee Corp. They all contend to know nothing about her or the QDRO. We sent a fax to Siemens Co back on Dec 12, 2014. As of today they don't have a resolution and say they are investigating. Where can we track this QDRO? We have the signed, sealed QDRO in our possession. We have made 100+ calls, spent endless hours, and sent out faxes and letters with information. Still nothing. Where do we turn next? PS- our friend L does not have a computer or know how to use the internet. My Wife & I are her main avenue for finding this.
  2. My husband was the alternate payee as a result of a QDRO from his first marriage, the divorce was finalized in 1985, and at that time he assigned his sister as his beneficiary, long before we met and married. We married in 2002, and although he contacted the retirement center of the QDRO with the intention to modify his beneficiary election, he was told that it couldn't be done until he started receiving benefits. He was supposed to start receiving benefits in Dec 2014, and requested the documents to start the process to receive payments, but he died last month (sept), the documents arrived 2 days after his death, he didn't get a chance to sign them and assign me as his beneficiary. Where do I stand now? Do I, as his wife for the last 12 years have any chance of receiving the benefit despite the fact that he didn't get to assign me in writing? Please help.
  3. If a defined benefit plan does not specifically prohibit an AP from being a QJSA 100% beneficiary, and a QDRO directs a participant to select the QJSA form of benefit with the AP as the 100% survivor beneficiary, for what reason(s) might a plan administrator claim the AP cannot be such a beneficiary (to the extent of the 100% survivor benefit)? Assume for the above that: -- the plan's standard QJSA is 50%, -- it also offers a 100% QJSA survivor option, -- the unmarried participant has retired and -- is ready to commence benefit recept, and -- the survivor benefit is fully subsidized by the plan. Any/all conjecture welcome, please.
  4. Original QDRO drafter is deceased, I in turn would appreciate board members' thoughts on the following: DBP, plan admin-qualified QDRO; QDRO uses standard coverture formula, assigns AP 50% of marital portion as retirement benefit with separate interest approach, marital portion being 54% of whole pension. QDRO has 'poison pill' provision -- neither can do anything to derogate the other's rights or things get very expensive. QDRO defines scope of 'Survivor Share' as 100% of the marital portion, includes QPSA for pre-retirement protection, and for post retirement uses the following language: - - - ...AP shall be treated as surviving spouse for the purpose of receiving her Survivor Share of the QJSA .... Upon retirement Participant shall be required to elect a form of benefit of the type and to the extent necessary to name and provide AP with her Survivor Share of the QJSA or its actuarial equivalent .... Participant may select any alternative form of benefit as long as his choice leaves intact the actuarial equivalent of a QJSA for the AP to the extent of her above-assigned interest. - - - Participant retires unmarried in early 2014 and reviewing benefit statement realizes calculation is off and will detrimentally affect AP, so he calls AP and together they learn from admin's counsel that admin calculated AP's survivor share as 50% based on admin's interpretation of QDRO and 1055(d)(2)(B) as applying to limit AP's survivor benefit to 50%. Admin's counsel also says participant can't name AP as 100% beneficiary (though plan doesn't appear to prevent this), and actuarial dept's benefit statement gives him a 100% survivor option. So due to poison pill provision he's stuck not being able to commence benefits until matter is resolved, with AP also on the verge of commencing her standard benefit, and admin won't budge. Participant and AP are friendly and decide to amend the QDRO to address their intent in another way to achieve their unchanged goals in dividing the pension, and before they do are seeking input. Assumptions (help me out here, math isn't my strong point): original whole: $300,000 marital part: $162,000 non-marital part: $138,000 Participant's remaining pension after AP's standard benefit is carved out is 46% of original whole plus half the marital portion of 54%, or 73% of the original whole. Since the admin would calculate the survivor benefit on the 73%, with a survivor benefit limited to 50% of that, AP's survivor benefit as calculated by the admin is 36.5% of whole, when by the parties' intent in the QDRO it is to be 100% of the 54%. What is the correct approach to the math? Thoughts on the parties' ability to achieve original intent? ___ * edited to add survivor benefit is fully subsidized *** edited again to fix math & add info on drafter
  5. Defined Contribution Plan. Plan language states that the benefit options available are a QJSA (if married), a lump sum, or partial benefits. If a Participant doesn't have contributions for 6 months, he can take a lump sum, even if not at retirement age (ignore the tax consequences for the sake of this scenario). At issue is another provision. The Plan also has language that says that an Alternate Payee may make a voluntary cash-out in a lump sum so long as it has been 1 year since the divorce. Now, a Participant can get his money in a lump sum after 6 months. The Alternate Payee has to wait a year. Is that permissible? Keep in mind that this language has been in the Plan since the early 2000s and the Plan has received 2 favorable determination letters since the language was inserted in the Plan. Now, I understand that the IRS doesn't really look at these Plans with a magnifying glass (well, some agents do), and I understand that, if the Plan language is improper then it needs to be changed. Now, with all the talk lately about sham divorces, this would be a possibly effective way to combat that (though if people really wanted to skirt the rules, they'd do it anyway). According to the DOL FAQ on QDROs: Now, that seems to say that the Plan can have provisions treating Alternate Payees and Participants differently by letting the Alternate Payee get her benefit sooner than a Participant or under different circumstances. Do you read it to say that a Plan can also impose greater limits on an Alternate Payee (under the "different circumstances" language)? Also applicable here is the DOL publication on QDROs, specifically part 2-15 From that same publication, part 3-8 It seems to me that there are some hurdles to enforcing the Plan's language. Now, if I can get the parties to agree to insert in the QDRO that the Alternate Payee won't have access to her account for one year, then I think that's ok. My bigger issue/question is the operation and language of the Plan. Your thoughts? Thanks.
  6. I have been divorced for a little over a year now. we split all asets, including 401K, and retirement. A month ago I called Fidelity to find out my retirement numbers ( which is going to be in about 7 years. I happened to see that it has my ex wifes name a spouse. I called Fildelity to find out why her name was on my retirement account. I ended up talking to thier legal dept. We both had seperate lawyers, My attorney ask me was it ok if the ex spouse attorney did our QDRO. Understand I didn't even know what a QDRO was/is.... It all sounded cut and dry 50%/50% split She recieved her share of my 401K which was fine. But I come to find out her attorney added the QPSA and The QSAP which I still don't totally understand. The company I work for is fully funded which I would have be able to take A lump sum when I reture. with the QPSA and the QSAP I have to take a 50% annuity when I retire, not to mention if I die before retiremennt she recieves my pension, Crazy...... She was already issued her share of my pension, why would I owe her anything when I retire. CAN I HAVE THIS AMENDED??? My whole future retirement plans are surrounded by my lump sume. As well as my two children being my beneficary when I die. I have no idea why my attorey would tell me she looked at the QDRO and said it looks good to her, so I signed it, is it to late. Please help. I am seeing another Attorney this week Thanks
  7. Hello, I administer a 401k plan in a corporate envirement. To improve efficiency and keep the costs down, we are looking at outsourcing the administration of the incoming DROs from employees. Can anyone recommend companies that do this (we are already looking at QDRO Consultants)? Thank You!
  8. I have a recently divorced employee who wants to 'liquidate' her account in our plan by awarding 100% to the ex. They intend to split the lump sum and go their separate ways. I cannot find any legal precedance to refuse the order. The document meets our terms, and just states that the ex gets everything. However, I know that the employee is essentially getting an early retirement distribution by filtering it through her ex. Any thoughts?
  9. I had the QDRO prepared by Lexington Pensions. They told me that I did not need a lawyer, they would prepare the order and I just needed to go file it in court so the judge could sign off on it. SIMPLE as that! I went to the court and they gave me a check list of what I need, - Notice of Settlement of the Proposed Order ? X- Proof of Service of the Proposed Order and Notice of Settlement - I understand they must both be served to former spouse. X - A copy of signed Judgement - I have it X- A copy of parties' stipulation of settlement - It's attached in the QDRO as you will see X- Correspondence from subject plan (s ) which states the Proposed Order meets their qualifications. Attached in the QDRO X - A self addressed stamped post card ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I have some questions, I am not completely sure these; 1- How do I name myself on the Affidavit of Service ? Current maiden name or former married name as is in the divorce? 2- When I serve him the order do I need to include the Addendum or the Correspondence from the Plan( both attached in QDRO ) to my former spouse or just the order itself? 3- Notice of settlement is filled out by me and that is served along with the order to my former spouse? 4- What box do I check on the Notice of Settlement for PLEASE TAKE NOTICE- Order ? 5- I sign it under Yours, defendant? 6- What is Notice of Settlement of Proposed Order mean? Thank you in advance to anyone who could shed somelight for me.
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