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Pension sharing; new spouse / death

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waterbabywaterbaby Forumite
500 posts
Hello,

What would happen in the following circumstance?

A and B are married and raise a family; A earning the money, B doing the large majority of house/children work. They divorce, and agree (through court order) that once A retires, B will receive a share of A's pension as regular income.

Chronologically:
Children become adults.
A remarries, new spouse is C. C has own income. No children.
A retires and makes the agreed payments.
A dies.

Upon A's death, what would happen to B's regular share of A's pension, given that A is now married to C? Court order apparently does not specify.

Thank you :)

Replies

  • edited 19 May 2019 at 10:03AM
    GDB2222GDB2222 Forumite
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    edited 19 May 2019 at 10:03AM
    What sort of pension scheme is this?

    Did the husband make any provision for death benefits for former wife?

    It's looking like she's going to get nothing.


    She may have a claim against husband's estate. Or against her solicitor! This is a well known problem with earmarking, and it ought to have been thought through.
    No reliance should be placed on the above! Absolutely none, do you hear?
  • edited 19 May 2019 at 2:22PM
    SilvertabbySilvertabby Forumite
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    edited 19 May 2019 at 2:22PM
    This does sound like an earmarking or attachment order which, as GDB says, ends on the death of A.

    If C receives a survivor's pension, it will be in accordance with the scheme rules on the payment of surviving legally married spouse/eligible cohabiting partner benefits, and will be nothing to do with the divorce order.

    Did A & B divorce before or after December 2000? The reason I ask is that whilst attachment/earmarking orders are still available, most couples who divorced after December 2000 opted for Pension Sharing Orders (PSOs). In these cases, the X% of pension awarded to the spouse is placed in his/her own pension fund, and is theirs even after the death of the pension fund member.
  • waterbabywaterbaby Forumite
    500 posts
    Thank you for the responses. It is a civil service pension.

    Not entirely sure when the divorce was, probably pre-Dec 2000 but can't say for sure.

    The death of A is fairly imminent, and I feel that B needs to seek professional advice to clarify the situation. B and C both seem to think 'things will get sorted out' by solicitors or whoever. C feels that B does have an ethical entitlement, but I can't imagine that B wants to be dependent on C.
  • edited 19 May 2019 at 3:29PM
    GDB2222GDB2222 Forumite
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    edited 19 May 2019 at 3:29PM
    Contact the pension scheme tomorrow, to see what can be done within the scheme rules. This particular scheme is very complex.

    Is A still compus mentis, or does someone have a power of attorney?

    I suspect that B will have to make a claim against A's estate.
    No reliance should be placed on the above! Absolutely none, do you hear?
  • edited 20 May 2019 at 6:34PM
    SilvertabbySilvertabby Forumite
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    edited 20 May 2019 at 6:34PM
    waterbaby wrote: »
    Thank you for the responses. It is a civil service pension.

    Not entirely sure when the divorce was, probably pre-Dec 2000 but can't say for sure.

    The death of A is fairly imminent, and I feel that B needs to seek professional advice to clarify the situation. B and C both seem to think 'things will get sorted out' by solicitors or whoever. C feels that B does have an ethical entitlement, but I can't imagine that B wants to be dependent on C.

    If, as it would appear, the pensions attachment order ends with A's death, then there will be nothing any solicitor can do in relation to B's pension award.

    As this is a civil service pension then C will almost certainly receive a survivor's pension (fine print depends on date A left the civil service and date of marriage to C). The civil service rules don't allow for survivor's benefits to be paid to anyone other than the entitled person.

    Only other option would be for B to make a claim against A's estate - perhaps for a one-off lump sum - but I really can't comment on how/if this would work. One for the solicitor, I'm afraid.
  • waterbabywaterbaby Forumite
    500 posts
    There's no power of attorney, but A not able to discuss fully.

    I'm not close enough to this to take action directly, but close enough to encourage some action. Thank you, you've confirmed that I am right that B needs to be on the front foot with this.
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