DEFINITION of 'Qualified Domestic Relations Order - QDRO '
A type of court order typically found in a divorce agreement that recognizes that the ex-spouse is entitled to receive a predefined portion of the individual's retirement plan. In most cases, the qualified domestic relations order (QDRO) allots 50% of the value of the assets gained from the beginning of the marriage to the time of the divorce to the ex-spouse.
BREAKING DOWN 'Qualified Domestic Relations Order - QDRO '
When the distribution goes to the ex-spouse, the ex-spouse becomes responsible for any taxes incurred when the money is distributed. However, if the individual does not receive a QDRO and decides to distribute the retirement-plan assets to his or her ex-spouse, the individual will still be responsible for the taxes on the ex-spouse's portion of the money, even though he or she no longer possesses it.