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Illegally Acquired QDRO Disbursement?

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Trying to find out what steps are taken when withdrawing a retirement benefits. My EX knew he had not signed the final paperwork of our QDRO (QDRO was awarded in final divorce decree that was signed by judge and filed so I have been told by court it’s a legal binding order regardless of paperwork was not completed). We were in the process of trying to finalize it and submit to his employer when he was apparently in bankruptcy proceedings. Fast forward a couple months, I contacted the State Department that handles QDRO only to find out ALL funds withdrawn. I was asked 3 times to subpoena them to get a full accounting of what happened. Yet I cannot just draw up my own subpoena correct? I was given some info that ex might have forged my name in order to withdraw monies? Possibly ex had to state funds had not been allocated in any legal actions? Ex was fired for embezzlement and is on a 5 year deferred sentence. Cannot have any matters entered into court during this time. Ex states he will pay me but I do not ever believe that. My question, is there a possibility he did have to sign something or possibly forge my name? Not looking to get him in further trouble but want to recoup what I am due. I realize I’m going to have to hire attorney. Not wanting to go this route before trying to get some clarification. 

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First and foremost, I agree with Luke.

That said, if your ex was a government employee and a member of a government pension plan, they are generally exempt from the spousal consent rules.  Many plans include the language, but my understanding is they are not legally obligated to do it.

In other words, the plan may not have required him to obtain a spousal consent in order for him to receive a lump sum distribution.  If it did, typically it would have required a notarized signature, therefore, in order to forge it, he would have also needed an accomplice who was a notary. 

Therefore, it seems more likely that your consent wasn't required.  (You can blame the plan sponsor and the state legislators, but you can't really blame your ex for that one.)

That said, I have seen a situation where the ex forged a spouse's signature and  had it witnessed by a notary, who happened to be sleeping with the ex at the time, so it is possible, but not probable.  There is also poor administrative procedures  where the sponsor doesn't know a consent it required.  Lots of possibilities.

He definitely needed to sign something in order to request and receive a distribution, but you would need more information to know if he forged your signature. 

Either way, we know he is a liar, embezzler, and a cheat, so it isn't like he afraid to break a few rules. 

The material provided and the opinions expressed in this post are for general informational purposes only and should not be used or relied upon as the basis for any action or inaction. You should obtain appropriate tax, legal, or other professional advice.

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Effen makes a good point. Spousal consent may not have been required if a governmental.

But if governmental could be community property, could maybe get a constructive trust, etc. Would depend on state law.

Luke Bailey

Senior Counsel

Clark Hill PLC

214-651-4572 (O) | LBailey@clarkhill.com

2600 Dallas Parkway Suite 600

Frisco, TX 75034

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  • david rigby changed the title to Illegally Acquired QDRO Disbursement?

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