Legal News: Domestic Relations (IRAs - Beneficiary)

Mass Lawyers Weekly Newspaper (August 31, 2020) "This Week's Decisions"

Where a plaintiff has filed a complaint against her deceased ex-husband's estate for payments allegedly due under the parties' divorce judgment, the plaintiff should be awarded summary judgement, as her ex-husband breached his contractual obligation under the parties' separation agreement to name the plaintiff as a benefiiary of one or more of his IRA accounts.

Plaintiff Sherry M. Parente was entitled to $20,000 from the decedent's retirement accounts. ...She has received $15,000 of that amount. The defendant Estate of Mark J. Phillips withheld the aditional $5,000 on the theory that Parente owed more than $5,000 net to the Estate. Given the court's conclusion ... that the Estate owes her $200,000, the Estate's rational for withholding the additional $5,000 in retirement account payments is incorrect. Parente is entitled to recover $5,000 for breach of contract on this count."