QDRO questions

I have a couple of questions regarding QDRO’s and 401K.

  1. When is a QDRO filed? When you sign the separation agreement or at the time of divorce?
  2. My husband and I agreed to less than the 50% amount, can this be put in the agreement as such?
  3. Can the funds be transferred from my 401k to his 40lk?

Thank you,


A QDRO takes sometime to happen. I would recommend you start the process now. Call your 401(k) trustee and ask them what they require. They may be able to send a check to his trustee. It may be easier for them to create a separate account.

The QDRO is filed once there is agreement, or ED order, on how to divide the asset to be QDRO’d.

The amount to be transferred is contained in the QDRO order.

Normally the account is divided per the order and the funds are placed in a new account at the original institution. From there they can be transferred, cashed-out, etc., as the law allows.

Ryan, can a couple specify in a separation agreement something other than 50/50 and have no trouble doing a QDRO after the divorce is finalized? Also, if there is a separation agreement then is there no ED order upon divorce?