CALL US:

0800 0351 999

0239 2483 322

Compass House,
57 Meridian Centre,
North Street,
Havant,
PO9 1UW

e-mail:
enquiries@swaincohavant.uk.com
Expert Services
Expert Services
A quality personalised service from a law firm based in Portsmouth/Havant, Southampton and Liverpool. We can help you. We will provide free first advice. Our lawyers are specialists in their areas of work.
Our Team
Our Team
We have specialist lawyers, many of whom are recognised as leaders in their respective fields and also share our unique focus on quality service and putting our clients first. Click here to find out more about our legal experts.
Fees & Figures
Fees & Figures
We provide a number of payment options: No Win No Fee, Legal Aid, Monthly payments, Fixed fee payment and other options. Here you can learn more about our payment options.

Pension and divorce – the overlooked asset

Pension and divorce – the overlooked asset

A pension can be the second biggest asset in a marriage or civil partnership.

But, they are often overlooked by separating couples.

Why are pensions overlooked in divorce?

Samantha Lee, Head of Family Law at Swain & Co Solicitors explains,

“Divorce is an emotionally distressing life event. You want it over as soon as possible to enable yourself to move on. But this often leads to short term thinking. Often ex couples focus on the family home and assets accrued that have physically been bought and splitting them. However, as a family solicitor, I have to focus clients’ attention to another sizable asset that is a pension.”

What are the options with pension and divorce?

There are three common options to consider with pensions and divorce:

  1. Pension sharing

    You get up to 100% of any one or more of your ex partner’s pensions. The pension is transferred to your name or you join the existing pension scheme. The money is treated as yours.

  2. Pension offsetting

    You use the value of the pension asset and trade off part, or all, of the claim on the pension in exchange for other marital assets. Typically the family home is used to trade against pension in divorce.

  3. Pension attachment or earmarking

    You receive payment from your ex partner’s pension when it is paid. It can be likened to a maintenance payment from their pension income to you. This includes lump sum payouts as well.

What is the best option with pension and divorce?

Samantha advises,

“There is no easy answer here. But, your legal advisers will discuss the options and the long term affects of each.”

Pension offsetting is most straightforward option

“The most straightforward and simple option is pension offsetting. However, this can be short term gains leaving you vulnerable later in life if you lack essential income.”

Pension attachment takes control out of your hands

Samantha continues,

“From experience as a family lawyer, pension attachment is the option that causes the most problems moving forward. You lose control over the asset. Your ex will decide when they start drawing their pension, how the pension is invested, plus you’ll be subject to tax at their threshold, not your own. You also lose the payments if your ex-spouse dies or you remarry”

It also means that you are reliant on your ex’s income. It’s also worth noting that there may be emotional issues around this ongoing arrangement.

The best option is often a clean break

“To take control over your future and your long term income, pension sharing is often the best option”, says Samantha.

With pension sharing the pension pot allocation becomes yours. You make the decisions on drawing and investment.

You remain in control.

If you need legal advice regarding pension and divorce, please contact us to discuss the options. Call us on 02392 483322 or fill in our enquiry form and we will call you back.

Initial Free advice

Legal Aid is Available*

Purely for Individuals

Experienced Lawyers 

*Subject to circumstances

Call us for a free initial consultation

0800 0351 999

OR we can call you back at a time of your choice

Request a call back

Area of Law

Preferred call time

May we add you to our newsletter please?
Yes




The data you submit will only be used by Swain & Co Solicitors. Please visit our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy for more information.

Mon to Fri: 9.00am - 5.30pm

No Comments Yet.

Leave a comment

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.