For employees of the federal government, there are 2 different benefit systems in which the employees may accrue their retirement benefits. Civil servants maintain their funds in the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS), and other federal employees are in the Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS). Just as qualified domestic relations orders (QDROs) govern division of ERISA controlled benefits for an employee who works for a private company, each of these two federal systems has orders that achieve some of the same purposes.
In the event that members of either system divorce, get a legal separation or wish to plan for some other form of domestic relations contingency, a legal instrument known as a FERS orders can achieve the following:
- Divide a FERS annuity
- Divide a refund of a FERS employee retirement contribution
- Provide a survivor annuity benefit upon death of an employee or retiree
- Allow for a former spouse to continue health care coverage under the Federal Employees Health Benefit Program (FEHBP)
- Require a former spouse to cover his children under the FEHBP
- Ensure that a former spouse assigns his or her Federal Employee Group Life Insurance Coverage (FEGLI) to a former spouse or child
- Require a former spouse to name his child or children as beneficiaries under coverage provide by FEGLI
It should be noted that such benefits can be garnished for purposes of paying child support, alimony or for damages related to child abuse. This may distinguish these benefits from those of other types of retirement accounts.
The Wilson Law Firm, a Professional Corporation, at 1120 Iron Point Rd Suite 100, Folsom, CA 95630 represents parties involved in domestic relations disputes. Call The Wilson Law Firm, a Professional Corporation at the firm’s office at: 916-608-8891 to set up an appointment to speak with Attorney Dennis Wilson or visit its website at http://wilsonlawfirmca.com /.