Dissolution judgment was final and enforceable at the time husband died. Wife wanted to get her share of the pension through a QDRO. The trial court said that it had lost jurisdiction when husband died. The court said that it had no power to issue an order for a QDRO for wife. A Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) is used to divide pension plans in a divorce.
Wife appealed. The appellate court said that the trial court did have continuing jurisdiction. The divorce decree was final. The QDRO had not been taken care of yet. But, the divorce decree itself said that she was to get a certain share of it.
The entry of a QDRO is part of carrying out a divorce decree. It does not matter that it was not taken care of when husband died. As long as the divorce had already been granted.
Second wife said that the pension was hers as the surviving spouse. She argued that no final dissolution judgment was in place at husband’s death. If the judgment were not final, then (first) wife would not be given a share of the pension.
But, there is a problem if the divorce decree were not final. That would mean that first wife and husband were still married. That would mean that the second wife and husband were bigamists?
In re Marriage of Platt, 2015 IL App (2d) 141174.
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