Pensions on divorce need careful consideration whether you are nearing retirement or have some time to go before you plan to stop working.
We recommend that you seek expert legal settlement advice from specialist family law solicitors so you understand your pension options on divorce and how best to achieve a fair divorce financial settlement.
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Pensions on Divorce
Pensions can be shared in divorce financial settlement proceedings. There are two main options:
- The pension can be shared by making a pension sharing order.
- The value of the pension can be factored in so you receive a greater share of other assets, such as the equity in the family home. This is referred to as ‘offsetting’.
Valuing Pensions on Divorce
Whether you or your spouse has one or several pensions it is important to get them accurately valued so you can either offset their value against other assets or agree to a fair pension sharing order
Simply relying on the pension valuation provided by the pension administrator can result in unfairness so it’s wise to seek advice from a family solicitor
A pension can be shared in any percentage from 1% to 100%. You may think that if you get a 50% pension sharing order you will receive the same pension income on retirement as your husband or wife. That is not necessarily the case as some pension companies base pension retirement income on factors that may impact differently across age or gender. If you want to achieve pension income equality for both parties, a pension expert can look at the best way of achieving this.
Once the court has made a pension sharing order, it is sent to the pension administrator to implement. They have four months to do so. When the pension sharing order has been implemented the pension share becomes your pension and you can draw down on it under the scheme rules. The new pension containing the value of the share received from a settlement remains your asset whether or not you remarry or your financial or personal circumstances change.
Pension or Other Asset
Most couples try to reach a divorce financial settlement by agreement and then ask the court to approve their agreement by making a financial court order. When considering such an agreement you must consider whether you want to receive a pension share or another asset. Much is dependent on your circumstances. What ever terms you agree, always consider whether they are fair and reasonable to both parties and whether they properly meet both parties’ financial neds, both now and in retirement.
Getting independent expert legal and financial advice on your options can be a good idea so you can weigh up your short-term and long-term needs. For example, if your priority is to keep your shares in the family business this may mean your spouse gets the equity in the family home and a pension sharing order. This outcome may place a lot of reliance and faith in one asset class rather than spreading your risk. An alternate option may be to borrow against the value of the shares so you can keep your business as well as retain a percentage of the value of your pension fund.
For an initial discussion and a no-obligation quote, get in touch with us today by simply calling us on 01234 343134 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and a member of our team will get back to you
Pensions and Spousal Maintenance
If you are receiving spousal maintenance, you may have the option of applying to the court to capitalise the spousal maintenance. This means you could either ask the court to give you a lump sum payment or a pension sharing order instead of ongoing spousal maintenance.
Pensions are complicated assets and when you are going through the stress of a divorce, it can be tempting to take the option you understand, such as keeping the family home. Our family solicitors can help you explore your pension options on divorce and help you achieve a fair divorce financial settlement. Most pensions cannot be valued the same way as property can on a pound for pound basis. Pensions which cannot be valued in this way include public service pensions such those held by the police, NHS staff, civil servants, those in the armed forces, teachers, or fire fighters. Expert pensions advice will be needed if these pensions feature in your case.
How Can Fullers Help?
We understand that finding a solicitor that you feel understands your own specific situation can be a daunting task. So you can book a free callback with us here.
We have also created a series of fixed-price consultation meetings with a full ‘no questions asked’ money-back guarantee promise.
Fixed Fee Divorce
When you are getting divorced it can feel as if you are surrounded by uncertainty; over the child and parenting arrangements, where you will live, what you will get or pay in spousal maintenance, or how best to split any finances and assets. With a fixed fee divorce, the stress is reduced to give you the confidence to start creating a new future for yourself and your family.
Did you know… mediation allows you and your former partner to explore ideas about what your future may look like after separating and find common ground, without the anxiety of court proceedings, which could potentially save you time, money and of course stress?
When trying to reach a divorce financial settlement with your ex-partner it can be hard to know where to start. Our family law solicitors can help you understand your rights and options so you can secure a divorce financial settlement that meets your needs.
When you are separating or divorcing, the priority for you as a parent is to sort out the arrangements for your children. You want to do the best for your children in what can be an emotionally challenging and testing time.
We understand that when relationships break down, life can become difficult. We know that thinking about a separation can be very upsetting and disruptive.
We understand that if you are unmarried and your relationship breaks down you may be confused about the best way forward.
If you are experiencing domestic violence or abuse, we understand that you will be upset, and might find it difficult to discuss what is happening to you.
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) offers family clients creative and flexible ways to put an end to their differences, without the added cost, delay and stress of going to court.
We advise on high net worth divorce and family arrangements. Our specialist family solicitors have the expertise and experience to help you resolve family law issues where there is high net worth, international connections, or a public profile to safeguard.
If you are not getting to see your grandchildren our family law solicitors can help you understand your legal rights and explore ways to make sure that you can get to see more of your grandchildren.
Whether you need spousal maintenance, or you are being asked to financially support your ex-wife or husband, spousal maintenance can be an emotive topic and a hard area to resolve.
Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreements
If you are planning on getting married you should think about signing a prenuptial agreement. You do not need to have significant wealth to benefit from securing the peace of mind and security a prenuptial agreement provides.
Together We Part Service
We are often asked by couples who are separating whether they can both have the same solicitor. They know that they need legal advice on some of the issues arising from their separation, whether it be finance or children. But they are afraid that involving lawyers on each side will lead to increased conflict and drawn-out disputes, as well as to significant costs.
Family Solicitors for Police
We understand that the nature of police work can put extraordinary pressure on family life and you need advice to ensure that your family related issues are resolved as quickly, and efficiently as possible.
Family Solicitors For NHS Staff
Nobody ever expects to have family problems, but when they do occur you will want somebody to help you resolve them, swiftly and amicably.
Military Divorce Solicitors
When you are in the military, there may be added pressures involved that could potentially lead to a breakdown of the relationship. Although the legal process of divorce is the same, there are often more complexities involved, such as military pensions, complex child arrangements and matters regarding child or spousal maintenance.