QDRO distribution before absolute divorce

Sorry if this has already been answered but I was not able to find the answer on the board. We are currently going through a separation and have agreed to divide our assets ourselves outside of an attorney. We formulated our won separation agreement and in there we said she would get a designated amount of money from my 401k. With that said do we a) need to submit an equitable distribution form to the courts and b) will a judge approve of the QDRO before the divorce occurs 8 months from now or does she have to wait the divorce is final to get the 401k money.

Thank you in advance

A claim for Equitable Distribution must be filed with the court and the QDRO will have to be signed by a judge. This can be cone prior to the divorce, and the funds can be transferred as soon as the Plan approves the Order.

Hi Erin,
Thank you very much for your past advises, it is really appreciated.
I thought I understood the ED concept but I ran into this post from another user and now I’m confused whether I need an ED or not

We did our own SA and everything has been distributed already except for the 401k which is being drawn up at the moment by an attorney. Please advise on how to proceed.
Thanks again

Can you please post what your specific question is? I would be glad to help you, but the attorney who is already drafting for you should be able to assist you.

So the question is whether I need to submit an ED before I can take the completed QDRO to the judge for the approval and distribution of the 401k asset. We won’t be divorced until January 2012. In the post I referenced above, the other user was in a similar situation where all the assets except for the 401k were already dispersed and the last thing was to draw up the QDRO. With that said, should I submit an ED now or submit an ED claim during the divorce or maybe not at all.
Thank you

Yes, when you file for divorce you need to include a claim for limited ED (just to enter the QDRO). You may submit the QDRO to the judge thereafter for entry.