Aviva publish pension research
In early May, pension provider Aviva published findings that concluded that thousands are at risk of pension poverty after they divorce.
The research states that one in seven didn't realise that their pension could be impacted upon by getting divorced, and that 34% of divorcing couples made no claim on their former spouses pension.
That is all the more alarming when one realises that one in twelve divorcees do not have their own pension, and were relying on their spouse to finance their retirement.
The Research concludes that roughly one in five (19%) will be worse off in retirement as a result of divorce.
The average age for getting divorced is at an all time high, and is 47 years and 5 for a man, 44 years and 9 months for a woman. One might assume, therefore, that the wealth accumulated in pension pots, and therefore capable of being divided on divorce, will be relatively high.
Pensions are often one of the most valuable assets, and it is essential to consider the division of pensions upon divorce.
It is not uncommon for there to be a considerable imbalance in pension assets held by a divorcing couple, and it is important to consider the range of options available when deciding how best to divide pension assets, such as pension sharing, pension attachment (ear marking), and off-setting.
It is a complex subject, and as well as instructing Family Law Solicitors, often it is advisable for a "Pensions on Divorce Expert" (PODE) to be instructed as Single Joint Expert (SJE) to produce a pension report, reporting on such issues as to how to equalise pension benefits between the parties on retirement. This is especially the case with public sector pensions, or where there are a mixture of pension types held by the parties, differences in the age of the parties, or health issues.