My spouse and I are divorcing. Am I entitled to share in my spouse’s pension?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jul 14, 2021

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Yes, if the pension was earned in whole or in part during your marriage, you’ll generally be eligible to share a portion of it. A lot depends on the state in which you and your spouse live. Many states do consider that the pension belongs to the participant and his/her spouse jointly. A state court will decide whether or not an ex-spouse or child is to share in the participant’s pension. ERISA will uphold the court’s decision. A lawyer who practices in the divorce field should be able to assist you to understand and protect your rights.

For a helpful article on how retirement assets are divided as part of a property settlement in divorce, click here.




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