Family Law




Pensions on Separation and Divorce:

The Family Law Act 1995 sets out the treatment of pensions in cases of judicial separation, and the Family Law (Divorce) Act 1996 makes similar provisions in relation to divorce proceedings.   These requirements now also apply to civil partners and cohabitants.

 Civil Partners and qualified Cohabitants:

The Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010 entered into force on 1 January 2011.   It extends marriage-like benefits to same sex couples in registered civil partnerships in the areas of property, social welfare, succession, maintenance, pensions and tax. It also establishes a financial redress scheme for opposite sex and same-sex cohabiting couples who meet certain conditions.

Where a decree of dissolution of a civil partnership is granted, either civil partner may apply for a Pension Adjustment Order (PAO) in respect of retirement benefits and a PAO in respect of contingent benefits under the pension arrangement of which the other civil partner is a member, in a manner broadly similar to that applying under the Family Law Acts to spouses.

Qualified cohabitants can apply for a PAO in respect of retirement benefits and contingent benefits at the end of their relationship whether that occurs by way of break-up or death.

There is no provision for the making of an order in favour of a dependent member of the family.

Reference: Pension Authority website, follow link below:

Family Law – for website

A Brief Guide to the Pension Provisions of the Family Laws Acts:

Pensions on Separation and Divorce checklist:



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