Separation or divorce and your pension
Learn how a separation or divorce affects your pension and review the issues to consider.
Dividing your pension
Your pension will be divided between you and your former spouse.
To receive their share of your pension directly from the plan, your former spouse must become a limited member of the plan. If your spouse does not, you will receive the full pension and are responsible for forwarding your former spouse's share to them.
As a limited member, your former spouse will automatically receive a copy of your Member’s Benefit Statement each year before you start receiving your pension. Some information in the statement will be removed to protect your privacy. However, it will show your pensionable salary and estimates of your future pension payment. If you have a former spouse with a right to your pension, this amount will include their share. This means that your actual pension payment will be less than that shown on the statement.
Your former spouse does not have to become a limited member to get this information. They can get a copy of your Member's Benefit Statement and other documents to help determine the value of your pension by submitting a Form P1 Claim and request for information and notice.
Once your former spouse becomes a limited member, they can apply to receive their share of your pension as soon as you reach your earliest retirement age. They can do this even if:
- You are still working and contributing to the plan beyond your earliest retirement age
- You have left your job with an employer participating in the plan and have left your contributions on deposit with the plan
When you apply for your pension, we will divide your pension according to the instructions you provided to the plan in your registered court order, signed separation agreement or Form P9.
If your former spouse does not become a limited member, we will pay you your full pension amount and you are responsible for forwarding your former spouse's share to them.
If you stop working for an employer participating in the plan before your earliest retirement age and transfer your pension as a lump sum to a locked-in retirement vehicle, your former spouse must do the same with their share of the pension.
As a limited member, your former spouse can name a beneficiary to receive any pension amounts still due to them after their death.