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pension Sharing Order

Posted by DaveDave 
pension Sharing Order
June 14, 2022 06:28PM
Separation going well and according to both our plans. both 52 years old.

we have amicably split assets/savings/maintenance etc, we are just left with the pensions to sort out.

We are agreed on a 50/50 split of all pensions. requires about a 30/70 split of my main pension to balance each others out (all DC/SIPP)

when we apply for a pension sharing order do we tell the courts what we have decided? how likely are the courts to go along with our wishes?

we have been amicable and fair so far, with a basic 50/50 split of most things and a maintenance payment (lump sum) going her way as i am the higher earner. i don't want all of this to come undone if the courts decide against a 50/50 split?

Re: pension Sharing Order
June 14, 2022 06:57PM
Whether a 50/50 split is fair very much depends upon the figures. There is a big difference between dividing assets equally when they are worth £1 million, both spouses earn the same and there are no dependent children. On the other hand if the assets are £300,000, there are dependent children and a wife earns a third of what the husband earns then an equal division is unlikely to be fair. The figures matter. It is not just about percentages.

For what it's worth pensions are often a discrete issue so it is quite possible an equal division of pensions might be fair although the division of other assets are unfair.
Re: pension Sharing Order
June 14, 2022 10:22PM
Asset split is her buying me out of the house and living there (mortgage free) 200k
savings split equally. 50k each
maintenance paid by me until she reaches 55 and can access pension. 25k lump sum
No dependants
pension total is a 1.2m predominantly mine. 600k each
earnings are she earns a 1/4 of my wage, but only part time currently.
we both have minimum 3 years more to work, so my pension provision is higher going forward, but surely i shouldnt be penalised for future growth?

we are both agreed on these figures and we both think it is fair.

just concerned like you say the judge might deem we split is differently. its very amicable currently, and seems to be staying that way,

Re: pension Sharing Order
June 15, 2022 10:40AM
Since you are going to divide pensions equally there should be no problem about it. What you contribute to your pension after the pension share will be yours and your ex will have no claim upon it.

Separately, but it is very important, if maintenance you pay to your wife is going to end when she reaches 55 then it is very important that any court order embodying this agreement is worded properly so that there is no possibility of your wife applying to extend the term. This requires very specific wording so you should ensure that YOU instruct a solicitor to draw up any court order and that you make it clear to your solicitor that maintenance is to stop once for all when your wife reaches the age of 55 with no possibility of extending that term. You should not leave the drafting of the order to a solicitor appointed by your wife in these circumstances because that solicitor will act for her and not for you. The wording needs to be very specific and it would not be obvious to a non lawyer exactly what technical words are required to achieve this result.
Re: pension Sharing Order
June 15, 2022 12:37PM
Thank you once again for your advice.

If I get a financial clean break order stating maintenance is 25k would that suffice?

If not It will be top of my list for solicitors to draft.


Re: pension Sharing Order
June 15, 2022 03:01PM
Like I said, if there is any ongoing spousal periodical payments for any period there needs to be very specific and technical wording to ensure that there is no possibility of that period being extended. If maintenance was paid in one hit as a one off capital lump sum then there would be a recital in the order explaining what that lump sum was for and the order would then be upon the basis of an immediate clean break. Either way you should not leave the drafting to your wife and you should ensure that you get it done by a solicitor. Much like trying to draft your own will it is exceptionally easy to get wrong if you do not get it done by a solicitor acting on your behalf.
Re: pension Sharing Order
June 15, 2022 03:58PM
Thank you David


Re: pension Sharing Order
June 16, 2022 11:14AM
Wouldn't things depend on expected retirement income, especially as women live longer than men?
We were advised to get a pension actuarial report (low thousands ££) to submit to the Courts to prove fairness.
Re: pension Sharing Order
June 16, 2022 02:19PM
What is being discussed here is a submitting a settlement to the court for approval. No-one needs to get an actuarial report in such circumstances. Also, the original poster is talking about an equal division of pensions. That can also be done in a broad way without needing an actuarial report and it often is when spouses are both in agreement.
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