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Arizona Retirement Benefits: Know Your Rights!

One of the most critical issues in many divorce cases in Arizona is the division of retirement plans. It is not unusual for a retirement plan to be the most significant asset that a couple owns. Community property division laws in Arizona subject retirement benefits earned during the marriage to division. The Harrian Law Firm, P.L.C. divides retirement benefits throughout the State of Arizona.

The law governing retirement plans is very specialized and requires a special order commonly referred to as a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO). The name, QDRO, is often used in a generic sense but it is a specific type of order when the retirement is sponsored by a private company. If the retirement plan requiring division is a Federal or State sponsored plan, a QDRO is not utilized but special dividing orders still need to be drafted in order to complete the retirement division.

Robert F. Harrian, Esq. of The Harrian Law Firm, P.L.C. is one of few attorneys in the Phoenix Metropolitan area that has the expertise to draft orders relating to the division of retirement plans. It would be unusual indeed if the family law attorney who handled your divorce would also handle the division of your retirement plans. Robert F. Harrian, Esq. devotes approximately 90% of his practice to retirement plan divisions. He has been appointed by the court as a special master to divide retirement plans. He has also been appointed by the court to divide retirement plans based upon an agreement of opposing attorneys in a divorce case.

Robert F. Harrian, Esq. has experience with drafting QDRO’s on 401(K) Plans, 403(b) Plans, IRA’s, Annuities, 457 Deferred Compensation Plans, Profit Sharing Plans, ESOP Plans, Military Retirement Plans and Federal Government Plans (CSRS and FERS). Mr. Harrian also drafts orders dividing retirement benefits for the Arizona State Retirement System, Arizona Public Safety Personnel Retirement System, and the City of Phoenix Employee Retirement System. Mr. Harrian understands the complexities involved in dealing with pre and post retirement survivorship protection, early retirement subsidies and cost of living enhancements. In the appropriate case, he knows how to draft a QDRO which allows a spouse to start receiving his/her share of pension benefits even before the member spouse retires.

If you are seeking a divorce in Arizona and are seeking legal guidance in this area, please contact our law firm to schedule an initial consultation.

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