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Action Following Award of Share of Benefits Pursuant to Divorce Decree
(Posted December 11, 2007)
Question 646: I was married to a rail conductor for over 11 years. We have been divorced for 2 years. As part of our property settlement I was awarded a portion of his retirement and 401(k) benefits. After 3 attorneys, I still don't have any answers. Am I entitled to any of this settlement now?
Answer: I'm sorry that you had to engage 3 attorneys to help you secure part of your former husband's Railroad Retirement benefit awarded to you in your divorce.
You have not indicated whether your former husband has retired and whether he has started receiving Railroad Retirement. You cannot be paid your portion of his benefit until he does. But you can take certain actions now to ensure that your monthly payments will start promptly.
Railroad Retirement benefits are administered by a federal agency called the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board, in Chicago. You should send a certified copy of your final divorce decree to the Deputy General Counsel, U.S. Railroad Retirement Board, 844 North Rush Street, Chicago, Illinois 60611-2092. The phone number is (312) 751-4948. You should also include your former husband's Social Security Number and both of your current addresses and phone numbers.
The Railroad Retirement Board then will advise you if there is anything further to do. At this point, you should not have to engage an attorney to handle this.
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