Friday, October 16, 2015

Yes Your 401k Account Can Be Taken For Overdue Child Support

By:  Carole L. Chiamp

Under ERISA 206(d)(3)(k), a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) can be enforced against employees and retirees to provide income for children who are alternate payees.  A QDRO can provide payment to the custodial parent as the guardian of a dependent child.  The plan may permit payment to an alternate payee even before the employee is eligible to receive benefits.  Under IRC 414(p), an EDRO can be enforced against state employers who consent to such orders.  Also, retirement benefits in pay status can be garnished under state laws of the Social Security Act to enforce child support orders.  Notices of withholding issued by a state agency (read Friend of the Court) that administers child support are enforceable as QDROs even without a court order as long as they meet ERISA requirements (Dept. of Labor Opinion 2001-6A).

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