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Member FAQs

If a QDRO will be needed following the conclusion of your divorce proceeding, typically one of the attorneys will be ordered to draft the QDRO and submit it to IPERS for qualification. Please be sure that the drafting attorney has IPERS QDRO Instruction Packet for use in drafting the required IPERS QDRO.

If it is determined that a QDRO will not be needed, please send a copy of your final divorce decree and stipulation to IPERS, noting where the decree states that you will retain full right and title to your IPERS benefits. IPERS will place this in your Member record.

IPERS does not provide present value calculations, because IPERS is a defined benefit plan.

Under a defined benefit plan, IPERS Members earn a retirement benefit based on a formula. The benefit formula uses three factors: the Member’s age at retirement, the Member’s service credit (quarters of covered employment), and the Member’s final average salary. IPERS retirement benefits are paid as a monthly lifetime annuity. 

No. IPERS cannot give legal advice regarding your divorce settlement or your QDRO.

No. IPERS provides several tools to assist your attorney in drafting the order. Be sure your attorney has visited this website and has the most recent version of IPERS Model QDRO and IPERS QDRO Instruction Packet.

If the appropriate Authorization for Release of Information form is provided, IPERS will help answer questions as your attorney drafts a QDRO that can be administered by IPERS.

For pre-retirement QDROs: No. Shared payments from IPERS to an Alternate Payee may be made only when you terminate employment with a covered employer and initiate a distribution by applying for a monthly pension benefit or a lump-sum refund. Or, if you pass away before applying for either of the above, and a share of death benefits has been awarded in the QDRO, the Alternate Payee may receive the shared payment as part of the lump-sum pre-retirement death benefit.

For post-retirement QDROs: Yes. If you are already receiving monthly retirement benefits, once there is a qualified QDRO and the required 30-day appeal period passes following qualification of the QDRO, IPERS may begin making shared payments to the Alternate Payee, prospectively from that date. 

NOTE: Neither you nor the Alternate Payee has a right to a loan or to request a hardship withdrawal from IPERS.

If you, as the IPERS member, accept monthly payments, your former spouse cannot be paid in a lump sum, but must also accept monthly payments.

If you are still legally married, you cannot change beneficiaries without the written consent of your current spouse. You must obtain your current spouse’s signature on the Beneficiary Designation form. If your spouse agrees to the change and signs the form, you may change your beneficiary. If not, you must wait until the divorce is final.

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