Robinson, Kriger & McCallum, Attorneys at Law

What is a QDRO?


What is a QDRO?

Published: 08/23/2017 
By: RKM 

A Qualified Domestic Relations order (QDRO, sometimes pronounced “qua-dro” for short) is an order in a divorce case that tells a plan administrator how to allocate all or a portion of a person’s retirement benefits to the other party. It’s basically a way to split up a pension or retirement plan by recognizing that both parties in a divorce have a marital interest in the plan, regardless of which party actually contributed the funds. In short, it’s a way to give each spouse a fair share of the funds. 

When everything is done appropriately, a distribution of proceeds from the retirement or pension plan from one spouse to the other has no immediate tax consequences for either party. Without a QDRO, there could be a significant penalty for early withdrawal of funds from the retirement plan. 

QDRO orders must be written precisely and approved by the plan administrator and the family law court.  When drafting a QDRO, the best advice is to seek professional help from a lawyer. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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