Case Study: Vyas v. Vyas
This case study focused on the relationship between the federal ERISA framework governing pension plans and state domestic relations law. There are federal law frameworks under ERISA as to who can be a beneficiary of a pension plan and who can reach other people's pension plans. But there are also state domestic relations rules that allow the usage of assets to satisfy alimony, child support and equitable distribution obligations. This case looks at what happens when those frameworks intersect, primarily on whether federal or state courts and ERISA or domestic relations law, should control. Despite the normal supremacy of federal law over state law, it's not always clear that state domestic relations law should be set aside for compliance with technical ERISA guidelines, as this case shows.
The case can be found here: