If a member of a relief association is involved in a divorce proceeding, the relief association might be contacted for information by the parties in the divorce or by their attorneys. The value of the member’s accrued benefit may be important to appropriately evaluate the marital assets. Courts may either award a percentage of the member’s benefit to the ex-spouse or a flat dollar amount.
Relief associations are usually given a draft copy of the divorce judgment or decree before it is filed with the court. If your relief association has questions regarding the draft of the judgment, your association should discuss it with the attorneys for both parties, the court, and/or the association’s own legal counsel. The OSA cannot provide guidance regarding marriage dissolutions. In addition, the relief association should remind both parties that the court order must comply with Minnesota Statutes, including sections 356.49, 518.58, 518.581, and 518.582. Relief associations typically are not subject to ERISA or its rules regarding Qualified Domestic Relations Orders.
Published last in the November 2016 Pension Newsletter