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Pension Rights on Divorce

When a married couple divorce and finances are divided, any pension must be taken into account. In many cases, a pension can be more valuable than your home and therefore it is essential to know what your rights are to your spouse or civil partner’s pension on divorce or separation. The age at which the Government State pension is becoming available is continuing to increase and so it is important that you secure an income for yourself when you retire.

On separation, pension and SERPs rights should be considered as assets to be fairly shared and there are various ways whereby a pension can be split.

Offsetting

Offsetting can be used to compensate one spouse for the loss of pension rights. The pension finances should be looked at up to the date of separation. It may be the case that a clean break can be effected, for example, by one spouse retaining items of matrimonial property in return for relinquishing a claim on the other’s pension or some of it. Generally the matrimonial property will be split equally between the parties on divorce.

Therefore the one half share of the property that one party would normally be entitled to can, in some cases, be given up, to offset their pension rights.

Sharing Order

A pension may also be shared by agreement or by court order. The pension provider can be directed to remove part of one of the spouse’s pension rights and assign them over to the other spouse, which will entitle that spouse to their own pension rights separate from their spouse.

The primary benefit of obtaining a pension sharing order is that you have your own pension on retirement. It therefore does not matter when your husband or wife retires or dies. Should you decide to remarry after the divorce this will not impact upon your pension sharing order. You can also decide who should be assigned your pension rights on your death.

Another benefit is that it allows a settlement to be achieved between yourself and your spouse or civil partner where there are insufficient other assets to offset against the pension value or where it is necessary for both to retain liquid assets but one party has substantial pension rights.

If you require any further information on your entitlement to a share of your spouse’s pension on separation or divorce do not hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Contact Our Award Winning Solicitors 

Email us: family@mcsherryhalliday.co.uk 

Contact us: Kilmarnock | Irvine | Troon

Call us: Kilmarnock: 01563 533121 | Irvine: 01294 274097 | Troon: 01292 313737

 

Caroline Nisbet
Partner

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Catherine Morrow
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Louisa Doole
Solicitor

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Kilmarnock

TEL: 01563 533121
FAX: 01563 522762
 
Bank Chambers
42 Bank Street
Kilmarnock
KA1 1HA
 
 

Kilmarnock

TEL: 01563 533121
FAX: 01563 570840
 
7 Bank Street
Kilmarnock
KA1 1HA

 
 

Irvine

TEL: 01294 274097
FAX: 01294 279692
 
Galt House
78 East Road
Irvine
KA12 0AA
 
 

Troon

TEL: 01292 313737
FAX: 01292 317856
 
8 Academy Street
Troon
Ayrshire
KA10 6HS
 
 

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COVID-19 Update

We at McSherry Halliday value the health of our clients and that of our staff. 

In light of the announcement made by the UK Government on 16th March 2020, we would ask all our clients to work with us to enable our firm to continue to provide our services to you for as long as is permitted during this troublesome time.

Where possible, we ask that appointments be conducted via telephone. In the event you require to sign documentation, we will arrange for that documentation to be sent to you with clear signing instructions together with a prepaid envelope for you to post back.

We understand there are certain circumstances in which a telephone appointment is not appropriate and you require to meet with a member of our team. We shall deal with these matters on a case by case basis so as to minimise the risk to you and our staff. 

In the event you have, or have had within the last 14 days, a persistent cough and or high temperature, we regret we will not be able to meet with you face to face.

Further information on the symptoms of coronavirus can be found at:

https://www.nhsinform.scot/coronavirus

We appreciate your co-operation.