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What are we each entitled to in our divorce settlement?

What does the law say about how to split the house, how to share pensions and other assets, and how much maintenance is payable.

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Police Pensions

  • Someones Mom
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26 Sep 12 #357920 by Someones Mom
Topic started by Someones Mom

Interested to get some advice.
Does anyone know of a good lawyer who understands complexity of Police Pension Scheme and family law for disabled children?
Being pushed to court and I dont think my solicitor really understands long term commitment of looking after disabled child. She is suggesting I ask for ("settle") for £100,000 lump sum of a £500,000 (CETV) valued police pension scheme which he is already drawing.....
Thanks x

  • NoWhereToTurnl
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26 Sep 12 #357935 by NoWhereToTurnl
Reply from NoWhereToTurnl
Hi and welcome to wiki,

It looks that there are two distinct areas to your question, one the pension and two the ongoing care of your disabled child.

It is impossible to advise on a fair settlement when looking at the pension in isolation. Other wiki''s will be able to help further if you are able to post more information.

Length of marriage inc any cohabitation.

Respective ages

Number of children and their ages

Income and source for both of you

Assets, equity in FMH

Liabilities, outstanding mortgage, loans, credit cards etc


Health issues.

Pensions are complex and none more so than public sector workers ie, NHS, Police, Forces

Once a pension is in payment the value is assessed by a CEB (cash equivalent benefit) but certain schemes have not implemented this yet (NHS). CETV might not give and often does not take into account the full benefits so undervalues the pension. Has an actuary been involved?
There are actuaries that deal specifically with the above type of pensions, has your solicitor discussed this with you?

The other issue is the ongoing care of your disabled child, has your solicitor requested any kind of assessment that would indicate the level and length of ongoing care?

Sorry to ask so many questions but, its so that you can receive the best support the wiki community can offer.

Best wishes,

  • ian conlon actuary
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26 Sep 12 #358083 by ian conlon actuary
Reply from ian conlon actuary
Hi, I can only gve you the run down on pension issues. Firslty, don''t get hung up about what the value is called, CETV, CE, CEB, they all mean the same thing.
I''m guessing that your husband is in receipt of a pension in excess of £20k per annum, either that or he is still quite young.
The two approaches to dealing with pensions are
1) pension sharing
2) offsetting
Starting with Offsetting, this is simplein theory. What happens is that husband keeps pension and wife is provided with higher proportion of other assets. The difficulty is in agreeing what value to place on the pension.
Once a couple are into mid to late 40''s Pension Sharing is more common as it''s common to not have sufficient other assets to compenstae for the value of the pension. Starting position for a long marriage would be to split 50:50, either on the basis of equal value to each party or equal incomes.
There is a difficulty in your case in that the police pension scheme will not pay you a pension resulting from a pension share until you reach age 60. On the other hand it provides you with long term security of income in retirement.
The most important point to take on board is that you are considering a financial asset which is worth something around £500k, if you''re not happy that your solicior is competent to deal with this then you need to consider whether it is in your best interests to retain their services or move.
You will almost certainly need an actuary''s report but it is much more common for these to be provided on a joint instruction basis.
Hope that helps.

  • Someones Mom
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29 Sep 12 #358445 by Someones Mom
Reply from Someones Mom
Thanks for that.

Just trying to work through all the information and get an understanding of my position.....

One huge confusion (which someone may be able to help with?)...

Ex started to receive his pension last year. Commutation already taken. If I am offered (and accept!) a pension sharing order, I understand that this means that I wont get any pension payments until I am 60 (15 years time), However, my solicitor seems to think that his pension will reduce by my percentage immediately ie now and not go down when I start being paid out. HIS solicitor seems to think that if I accept this, he will continue on his full pension until I start being paid out (he wants to keep the house to sell at this point to "make up" the difference to his pension when I hit 60!)
Anyone know which solicitor is correct???

It obviously makes a hige difference to both our positions .....

Thank you x

  • ian conlon actuary
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29 Sep 12 #358494 by ian conlon actuary
Reply from ian conlon actuary
If for example your husband was receiving a pension of £20k per annum then a 50% Pension Share will reduce his pension immediately on the pension share being implemented by 50% to £10k per annum. As you will only start to draw the benefits from the pension share in 15 years time, the pension you will receive will be substantially higher - probably of the order of £15k - £18k in todays money, it would further increase in line with price inflation from now until you reach age 60 and also increase in payment each year.
As your husband has drawn a cash sum, you will not be entitled to take a cash sum at age 60.

  • Someones Mom
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30 Sep 12 #358542 by Someones Mom
Reply from Someones Mom
Thanks for that, but I am probably being a bit dim.... With a police pension will his actual monthly amount reduce now or when I take my benefit in 15 years time? Very important to understand how much we both actually have to live on at this point in time and technically in 15 years....

  • hadenoughnow
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30 Sep 12 #358543 by hadenoughnow
Reply from hadenoughnow
I think Ian was quite clear on this point. If there is a pension share, the impact on his income will be immediate. You, however, will not receive your income from it until you reach pension age.
Because the pension for you cannot be taken yet, it will grow in value. The actual income you eventually get will be more than he is getting .....but bear in mind he will have been receiving pension for many more years.
He has already had the tax free pension lump sum so you will not be able to get another tax free lump sum when you retire.

The pension is only part of the picture. To advise you more effectively we need a fuller financial picture.


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