Financial Power Blog — Retirement Planning

The Beneficiary Form Trumps All Other Documents

The Beneficiary Form Trumps All Other Documents

In a ruling on January 26, 2009, on Plan Beneficiary Form in the case of Kennedy vs. Dupont Savings and Investment Plan, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled that William Kennedy's ex-spouse would receive his $402,000 retirement plan because she was the named beneficiary. Mr. Kennedy died in 2001. Under the divorce decree of 1994, his ex-spouse waived her rights to any benefits from his retirement plan. Mr. Kennedy wanted the proceeds to be paid to his daughter.   So what could go wrong? Simple, Mr. Kennedy failed to change the beneficiary form. Mr. Kennedy believed because his ex spouse...

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