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Attorney Carrie Wilcox

Should you get some of your ex’s pension? 

| Jul 9, 2021 | Silver Divorce

Your spouse is the one who earned a pension through their job.. You also worked but didn’t have the same benefits, so you were counting on that pension to retire. 

Now your spouse has asked for a divorce, and they’re on their way to becoming your ex. Retirement isn’t that far off, and you’re not sure what you’ll do if you lose the pension. Can you get some of it during the division of marital assets? 

You need to use a QDRO

You actually may very well have a right to a portion of your ex’s pension. The portion that they earned while you were married does count as a marital asset, even though they haven’t retired yet and are not drawing that pension. 

What you need to use is a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). When used properly, this document can allow a percentage of the pension to be paid to you. 

For instance, say you deserve half of the pension for the time you were married, and your spouse will also have earned half of the total during that marriage. You may get a quarter of the total — your half of the half they earned throughout your marriage. If the pension pays $8,000 per month, then, you would get $2,000 per month through the use of the QDRO. 

Setting up your own paperwork

Please note that every situation is unique and how much you get varies, based on numerous factors. Just make sure you know if you have a right to some of the pension and how to set everything up. Don’t hesitate to seek legal guidance throughout the process.