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How do I file a Release Joinder to release my ex-husband's retirement account?

Bakersfield, CA |

My ex-husband recently got laid off from his job and has to move his retirement money elsewhere. On that retirement account I have a joinder from our divorce so that I would get half his retirement. There is no ill-will or any problems with him, we have an agreement for when he pulls it out. I just need to know how to release his retirement account so he can pull it out and give me my share.

I just want to release his retirement. I don't have the money to pay to get the QDRO done and we've both agreed that he'll give me my fair share, which I know will come with penalties for pulling it out early. I just need to know where I can get the Release Joinder and file it to get it off his 401K. I have spoken to the 401K company and they have just said I need to file a Release Joinder.

Attorney Answers 1


If your husband's retirement account is a qualified retirement plan subject to ERISA (such as 401(k) plan), the plan administrator will require a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO) to properly distribute to the employee participant and the former spouse. You have to consider tax consequences of distribution from a retirement account. With a QDRO, there is no recognition of income and no 20% withholding provided you transfer or roll-over your QDRO distribution to an IRA, individual retirement annuity, a qualified plan, etc. within 60 days of distribution.

For informational purposes only; no atty-client relationship created.

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