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Is my pension plan protected from Lawsuits. I am in Alabam

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Is my pension plan protected from Lawsuits. I am in Alabama

Hello and thanks for choosing Just Answer®. I am a licensed attorney, and I will be glad to try and assist you.


To provide you with accurate information, could you please clarify these points so I can best address your inquiry:


  1. What is the nature of your pension plan (i.e. traditional defined benefits, 401K, 403B, etc.)?

  2. When you mention "lawsuits", what type of action specifically did you have in mind (i.e. debt collection, civil suit, alimony/child support, etc.)?


Once I hear back from you, I will be glad to let you know my answer. There may be some delay as I am assisting other customers or am away from my computer. Please rest assured, however, that I will get back to you as soon as possible.



Customer: replied 7 years ago.

401 k pension plan.

Lawsuit would be civil such as libel or slip on property etc.

Hello and thanks so much for choosing this forum to pose your important legal question. I will do my best to give you some honest and accurate guidance as I answer your question.


  1. I am a licensed attorney with litigation experience, and I will be glad to try and answer your question. I hope that the following information will be helpful to you, but please just write back if you have any follow-up questions or need clarification on anything after reviewing the following information. Thank you for taking the time to write back and supply the additional requested information, which was helpful to my analysis of your inquiry.
  2. I am pleased to share some good news with you by way of the protections afford by the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), Pub.L. 93-406, 88 Stat. 829. 401(k)s and other ERISA-governed plans have rock-solid asset protection against private judgment creditors. In other words, if a plaintiff did obtain a judgment against you, your pension assets would be protected. About four years ago, in a 401K to Individual Retirement Account (IRA) rollover case, the United States Supreme Court unanimously upheld this principle and in effect strengthened the law in this regard.
  3. There are certain narrow situations where a creditor has an automatic right to go after retirement funds (i.e. divorce, Internal Revenue Service, a retirement plan participant who commits embezzlement against his or her own fund). However, none of these would be of concern based on what you have related here. Another important consideration in the case of a slip and fall or other premises liability action would be that your liability insurer would have a duty to provide your legal defense and pay covered claims. The botXXXXX XXXXXne answer to your question, however, is yes your pension plan is protected from such lawsuits.


I hope that this information has been helpful to you. If we can be of any further assistance please free to use our service again. Best wishes for a successful outcome.


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The information provided is general in nature only and should not be construed as legal advice. By using this forum, you acknowledge that no attorney-client relationship has been created between you and Benjamin M. Burt, Jr., Esq. You should always consult with a lawyer in your state.

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