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Divorce settlement V Benefits

  • dpmcm
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04 Jul 16 #480807 by dpmcm
Topic started by dpmcm
I was awarded £44,000 of my ex's pension in the divorce settlement which I am hoping to get before end of year.

I am on long term benefits, as I am disabled, 56 years of age, and unable to work. I know I will have to inform the DHSS of this settlement as I received ESA income based and DLA.

I have been told by different people that the DHSS will decide how long this money is to last me and when I will be able to claim benefits again. I owe at least £20,000+ to debts and some to family members who helped me. Now I do not disagree that I have to lose my benefits, but I am annoyed that I will have to use this money, that was supposed to help me and get me through old age etc.., for rent etc., that I was getting paid for me at present.

Please do not think for one moment that I am a scrounger taking money of the DHSS but I have to claim as I have no other income of my own and yes I did work many years ago.

Can anyone tell me if I was told the correct advice about the DHSS?

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04 Jul 16 #480813 by WYSPECIAL
Reply from WYSPECIAL
I don't think the DSS have a table they use to work out how long they would expect your money to last and tell you in advance when you can reclaim.

As far as I know it is more of a case of if you closed your claim then made a new claim in a very short period of time saying that you had spent the lot they may question your expenditure and look at the possibility that you had deliberately depleted your money.

Might be worth speaking to DSS or CAB to find out more.

  • Luna Shadow
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04 Jul 16 #480817 by Luna Shadow
Reply from Luna Shadow
No, you have not been given the correct advice.

I am assuming here that the pension you are getting is in the form of a pension share and therefore will be a pension in your own name when you get it.

While you are under pension credit age (in your case this is the same as state pension age) then providing you don't take your pension (draw down, buy an annuity etc) then your pension is disregarded for benefits purposes.

See www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/upl...ies-dwp-benefits.pdf

So, you can leave it until you do draw your state pension and take it then. It will affect any entitlement to pension credit, but will not have any effect on your state pension.

If you do take the pension then it will either be treated as income (e.g. if you take an annuity the actual amount you receive will be treated as income and deducted pound for pound from your ESA) or capital - this is a little more complex but it might be possible to take a lump sum under drawdown, and if it and your other savings are less than £6,000 it will be disregarded as under the capital limit. However if you do this repeatedly then the DWP may consider that it is actually income and reassess accordingly.

I do recommend you speak to CAB regarding your debt and the best way forward. Some initial information may be found here:


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