A Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO)…
is a special kind of Court Order which divides a pension plan or retirement account as part of a divorce. Your divorce settlement most likely divided the pension and retirement benefits between you and your ex-spouse. While your divorce settlement states how pension benefits are to be divided, the additional step of having a QDRO prepared must be undertaken in order to actually divide the pension benefits.
QDROs require very technical language and most divorce attorneys do not fully understand the necessary requirements, which is why you should retain an attorney who is experienced in drafting QDROs.
A QDRO should be prepared as soon as possible after a divorce, as the death or retirement of your ex-spouse prior to a QDRO being completed, can in some situations cause deterimental complications to you.