Supreme court gives retirement plan to ex-spouse

Couple is married and Mr. makes Mrs. the primary beneficiary of his retirement account.

Mr. & Mrs. get divorced.

Mr. does not change his beneficiary and then dies.

The U.S. Supreme court recently ruled in Kennedy Estate vs. Plan Administrator for DuPont Savings that the ex-spouse gets 100% of the retirement plan because the beneficiary designation trumps the divorce decree .

Moral of story: Always update your beneficiary designations for retirement plans, especially after a divorce.

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