Pension rights can form a huge portion of the consideration that must go into any family law file.
Pensions are effectively deferred income which kicks in at a certain, usually predefined, time.
A defined contribution pension is a bit more difficult to advise on because it is only defined as payment per month or week, depending on the scheme itself. The benefit is not ascertainable until such time as the scheme is encashed to commence payments.
It should also be noted that Pension Adjustment Orders can be made by the Court to either of these two types of pensions. The Court will usually look at the overall length of service that each spouse is likely to give to their pension scheme and the current state of the marriage; it is weighed up on this basis.
There are also two other types of benefits which should be considered for the purposes of any discussion or examination in this area. The first is a retirement benefit which may be due to either spouse upon their retirement from the scheme itself. This includes lump sums and gratuities from the scheme. The second is death in service benefits, which may be in lieu of payments out under the pension.
It is important to note that a Pension Adjustment Order should include all of the scheme’s benefits and not just simply the weekly or monthly payout that will ensue once the scheme has completed and the fund commences paying out.
At Conway’s Solicitors we can advise you in respect of such matters.