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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
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Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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Our divorce was final 12/94 with Equitable Distribution. There

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Our divorce was final 12/94 with Equitable Distribution. There was a QDRO against my pension for my ex where she was to get 70% of my pension. The agreement between the sides was that my attorney would draft the document and her attorney would file it. Well, the document was never filed and it is my understanding that there is a statute of limitations that this had to be filed within 2 years of the 12/94 date. Well, 19 years later, she wants me to file the QDRO but I see no reason to do that. I have already started taking the pension early at a reduced rate. It was her side that failed to file the document that my attorney provided within 30 days of 12/94. Therefore, I feel that I don't need to do anything. If she had recourse, it should be against her legal firm although she fired them and told them not to spend any money on anything which I believe is why the QDRO was never filed. What do you think?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 9 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

It seems the PA Superior Court addressed a similar issue in a NON-PRECEDENTIAL case, meaning you could not consider citing this for anything ( See: Kepler v. Kepler (Pa. Super. Ct., 2013) ) . The court held in a case where the one spouse was supposed to submit the QDRO and failed to do so and returned 19 years later (coincidence with your time period only) that :

In any event, it should be noted that the four year statute of limitations does not apply to continuing contracts such as this PSA. "In the case of continuing contracts, such as post nuptial agreements, where the duties of the parties are ongoing, the statute of limitations generally does not run." See: Crisco v. Crisco, 909 A.2d 308 at 315 (Pa. Super. Ct., 2006). Crisco also states that when a contract is continuing, if applicable, "the statute of limitations will run either from the time when the breach occurs or when the contract is in some way terminated." Id. at 313. It appears that the order to issue a QDRO is a continuing order and it would mean she could still file it. There is also no statute of limitations in federal law to file a QDRO under ERISA.

You need to take your court order to your attorney, since he is the one best familiar with your case to make a proper evaluation based on the specific facts of your case.



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Customer: replied 9 months ago.

She has gone to an attorney and they advised her to try to get me to voluntarily give her something. His comment was that since she was the one who told her attorney to spend no more money and therefore prevented her attorneys from completing their part of the agreement, she was responsible for creating the breach and that they would very likely not have a good outcome. So, she is using this other approach asking me for something. Since she already has had a negative response from an attorney I thought it best to let dead dogs lie. He also said that they could spend $10K+ easily to take this to court and that she could never recover the legal costs from me since the action was based on her orders to her former attorneys. Your thoughts on that? Should I just let it lie and only make some type of offer if she takes legal action.

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 9 months ago.
Thank you for your response and additional information.

The same thing happened in the court case above so your facts are very similar to those cases. As the case is not precedential, there is a potential she could lose her case and while she might not be able to win legal fees against you, she might still get the pension award if the court follows that non-prescedential case which they are not legally bound to do.

70% is a high amount of your pension and it might be best to wait to see if she is really going to try to file suit and then make some offer through your attorney to get a written agreement with her to take a lump sum payment in lieu of continuing to pursue the pension and incur legal fees because it was her fault the QDRO was never filed. You should always discuss your decision with your attorney before finalizing it.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 88672
Experience: Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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