My ex left me for a 25YOF in Trinidad W.I. 31/2 yrs ago. he moved to Trinidad several months before the divorce was even filed. When it came time to negotiate the terms of the divorce, in particular, his military retirement and 401K he threatened me.
He threatened to dissappear in Trinidad and never pay me a penny of child support. I was afraid he would make good on his word. My attorney basically advised me to roll over and take it. I have finally recovered from the shock and I am ready to fight. I am just afraid it is too late.
It is too late unless you are within thirty days of the decree of divorce being signed. If not, then the court has lost jurisdiction of the case and all the property.
If you are within thirty days of the decree being signed, you can attempt to file a motion for new trial. I doubt it would be granted, but you could try.
To obtain an interest in your former spouse's 401(k) plan account, you would need to obtain a court order known as a "qualified domestic relations order" or "QDRO". You likely would need a similar court order to obtain an interest in a military pension. It is not uncommon for such orders to be issued years after a divorce has been finalized; however, local law and the terms of your divorce decree may affect your right to go back to court to seek such an order. If you intend to pursue your former spouse's retirement benefits, you should notify the employer who sponsors the retirement plan or the plan's administrator, ask that a hold be placed on his benefit payments, and ask what steps you need to take to obtain a QDRO (or other similar order with respect to the military pension). A family law attorney licensed in your state, who is knowledgeable about retirement plan matters, should be able to give you more specific advice regarding your rights.
Best of luck.
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