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Ray, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 41004
Experience:  30 years in civil, probate, real estate, elder law
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My ex-husband and I were married for 14yrs. He retired from

Customer Question

My ex-husband and I were married for 14yrs. He retired from the Post Office in 2002. I assumed I had nothing since gov't workers don't pay into Social Security. Several months ago I found out that I was entitled to part of his retirement. He has stonewalled me claiming he has no code that would let me do this easily....he is lying because he has talked to their son, admitting his friends ex wives do take a part of their retirement. Would I be entitled to back pay for his dishonesty since 2002?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ray replied 9 months ago.

Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you today.Please bear with me a few moments while I review your question and respond.

Expert:  Ray replied 9 months ago.

Yes you may seek division of the retirement and judgment for your share of arrears.This amounts to undivided marital property.You would need to motion to modify divorce settlement here and for division of the asset.You need a QDRO here, a qualified domestic relations order, it is a specific order drafted by a lawyer that tells the retirement folks what amount to pay you .Your lawyer may use a forensic accountant to calculate the amounts you are due.This is then approved by the court.

You have rights to your share, you will need local lawyer to file where divorce was granted.The lawyer would seek legal fees here too.

I appreciate the chance to help you tonight.Thanks again.

Expert:  Ray replied 9 months ago.

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Expert:  Ray replied 9 months ago.

Reference to Indiana Law

In Indiana, vested retirement accounts are subject to division by the court. The court sets aside to either spouse a percentage of those payments, either by assignment or in-kind at the time of receipt.

When retirement benefits are contingent, for instance, upon the worker spouse remaining at such place of employment a certain number of years and those number of years have not been achieved at the time the divorce was filed, those retirement benefits are not subject to division.

In Indiana, vested pensions are marital property. A pension vests when all the requirements to receive the pension have been met. Unvested pensions are also marital property. Until the pension has vested, the person under whom the pension is maintained has only an expectancy of interest in the pension.

Several different methods of valuation are used in determining how much a marital asset is worth, depending upon the asset to be valued and the level of agreement between the parties. Courts generally accept the value when the spouses mutually agree on a value of a particular asset. Experts may be retained by the parties or by the courts to determine the value of marital assets if the parties cannot agree. Such experts may include accountants, real estate or business appraisers, or pension valuators. The use of experts adds to the cost of the divorce.

In Indiana, if spouses share in each others retirement or pension plan, a Qualified Domestic Relations Order must be completed. A QDRO is a written set of instructions that explains to a plan administrator that two parties are dividing pension benefits. The instructions set forth the terms and conditions of the distribution - how much of the benefits are to be paid to each party, when such benefits can be paid, how such benefits should be paid, etc.

Expert:  Ray replied 9 months ago.

Thanks again I appreciate the chance to help, let me know if you have more follow up.If you can positive rate 5 stars when we are done it is always much appreciated.

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