Will I be able to get part of my spouse’s retirement or pension account?

A Michigan court can award the retirement or pension account of one spouse to the other in a divorce using a “qualified domestic relations order” or an “eligible domestic relations order.” This order, signed by the judge, orders the plan administrator to divide the account as instructed (e.g., 50/50) and then the one spouse (e.g., the wife) will become part owner of the other spouse’s (e.g., the husband’s) account. In this example, if the husband cannot draw on the account until he is 55 years old, then the wife must wait until the husband is 55 years old to take her own share. His eligibility criteria applies to her—and it is his age and years of service that count, not hers.

If retirement monies are in an IRA (individual retirement account), a judgment of divorce with specific terms can be used to distribute the IRA.