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Contestation Period for QDRO


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Plan's QDRO procedures stipulate that once a QDRO has been certified, there is a 60 day period in which either party may appeal (although I'm not sure if there are limits on WHAT they can appeal). The question is whether the participant or the AP should have investment control of the AP's interest during this time, knowing that there is some chance that the participant could appeal the QDRO in some fashion and the amount payable to the AP could be reduced or eliminated. Thoughts?

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If the employer/administrator has made written QDRO procedures, it might want to revise that document to specify which person directs investment during the period you describe.

Perhaps BenefitsLink mavens might weigh in on which provision is more likely to support efficient plan administration.

Peter Gulia PC

Fiduciary Guidance Counsel

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

215-732-1552

Peter@FiduciaryGuidanceCounsel.com

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If the Order was properly issued by a court and contains acceptable provisions, while I am not a lawyer and do not practice in the QDRO area, is it not true that there can be NO provisions under the plan involving anyone appealing the Order under the plan?  Once accepted as Qualified by the plan administrator, the only thing that could get in the way of its being carried out exactly as is would be another COURT order staying or overturning the QDRO.  There can be no discretion on the part of the plan administrator. The plan administrator can be under no obligation to watch out for pending court orders involving a challenge to the original Order!!!

Always check with your actuary first!

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Generally, I would expect the availability of an appeal in the section of the QDRO procedure that describes what the procedure for notifying the P and AP of a determination that the DRO is NOT a QDRO.  

Any appeal should be limited to whether or not the DRO is qualified.  To change what is in the order they would need to go through the court.

If the procedures are silent as to who has control over segregated assets during the appeals period, I would give control to the AP.  The reason is simple, you have already determined that you have a QDRO.

 

 

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  • 7 months later...

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