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So you are wondering if you are entitled to a portion of your wife's 401k?
yes, either the part of pre-marriage contribution, or growth during marriage. If not, what is the purpose of a pre-neptual?
i understand that 7 years or more constitute "long term marriage" in teneessee
Do you have a prenuptial agreement?
Different jurisdictions have different amounts of time, most are 10+ years, to allow for a QDRO to issue, which is a spouse taking a percentage of a retirement account.
we have no pre-nuptial agreement....what does "QDRO" stand for?
Qualified Domestic Relations Order.
It is what is given to the retirement or pension holder to indicate that you are to be a payee on the account.
so what do i cite to my attorney, to go after this money?
Ok, if your marriage is considered a long term marriage for purposes of obtaining a portion of the 401k, you would only be entitled to the portion of the account that has grown during your marriage. Retirement benefits can be considered marital property and subject to division by the court to the extent that they were acquired during the marriage. In certain circumstances, the appreciation of those assets could also be divided. These issues can be very complex.
So it is good you have an attorney. You will have to request it in your divorce, and seek it as part of your divorce complaint.
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