Carter-Wallop v. Wallop

In Carter-Wallop v. Wallop, 88 P.3d 1022 (Wyo. 2004), the district court awarded the wife a portion of the husband's federal civil service retirement benefits and ordered that a QDRO should be prepared in accordance with the applicable federal regulations. On appeal, the husband argued that a QDRO was not applicable to civil service retirement benefits. Id., 88 P.3d at 1035. We noted that the term "QDRO" is "an ERISA-created term" (referring to 29 U.S.C. 1001 et seq.), that ERISA did not apply to federal civil service retirement benefits, and that "QDROs are not acceptable to affect CSRS benefits unless the correct terminology is used." Id.,88 P.3d at 1035. The Court concluded that the applicable rules nevertheless allowed an order to be labeled as a QDRO if the order expressly stated that it was written in conformity with the applicable substantive non-ERISA regulations. Id., 88 P.3d at 1035-36. The divorce decree in Wallop provided that it should be governed by the applicable non-ERISA federal statutes and regulations and we held that "while the district court did order that Wife's counsel prepare a QDRO, it appropriately specified that any such QDRO be drafted within OPM's rules and regulations as required." Id., 88 P.3d at 1036.