Thursday, May 25, 2017

U.S. Supreme Court Retirement Case

In Howell v. Howell decided on May 15, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously handed a victory to Air Force veteran John Howell, who was divorced from his former wife, Sandra, over 25 years ago. Although the divorce decree had ordered John to share half of his retirement pay with Sandra, John later opted to waive part of that retirement pay (on which he pays taxes) to instead receive disability benefits (which are not taxable), thereby reducing the money that Sandra received. The justices today ruled that John cannot be required to reimburse Sandra for the $125 per month that she no longer gets as a result of his choice.  This has lots of real world consequences.  A link directly to the opinion is here.

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