Family Law Questions? Ask a Family Lawyer Online.
The divorce judgment, the court awarded you, and expressly declared that you shall be entitled to received, "an interest in any and all pension and/or retirement plans or benefits, including a survivorship interest and/or surviving spouse benefits in which the husband has acquired an interest during the marriage, whether such benefits are regular retirement, early retirement, disability, buy-out or otherwise * * * ."
That seems pretty clear and all-inclusive. Simply apply the formula as set forth in the divorce judgment to the amount of the buy-out and that takes care of that. The right to receive the buy-out, which was actually an early retirement incentive, was a right based on employment that occurred during the 30+ years of marriage. I do not understand the basis on which it can be argued that you are somehow not entitled to your court-ordered portion thereof.
Had a QDRO been prepared, standard language would have been included declaring that "The Alternate Payee shall be entitled to a pro rata share of any early retirement subsidy (including any temporary or supplemental benefits) provide under the Plan to the Participant."
Also, I do not under why "the judge wants it in writing that this money was not for future use." What difference would THAT make? Whether the money was for past use, present use or future use would appear to be irrelevant. You are entitled to your 1/2 of the marital portion (determined by the formula set forth in the divorce judgment) regardless. As a general rule, money is paid based on past services to the employer, with the money intended for the employee's future use. That's pretty obvious. As kids nowadays would say: DAH!!!
Well, I've gone as far as I can with this discussion. If this were an Oregon case, I would obtain a complete photocopy the entire court file in your case and give it a full evaluation and analysis (as I am often called on to do by other Oregon lawyers who are not fully experienced and knowledgeable in deal with the retirement and pension issues as the pertain to divorce). This is something that, perhaps, your lawyer in Ohio should have done early on. (Too often, younger lawyers are afraid to admit to a client that they really don't have a full understanding and need to call on another lawyer for a little bit of help.)
So I wish you well, and I thank you for you kind and flattering words. Take a bit of solace in the fact that the situation could always be far worse. Think of all of those who put their gelt with Madoff and now have bupkis. Something is better than nothing, I suppose, and hopefully you have good health.
PS: You have already paid for the information provided here. No need to do so again.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).