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Separation agreements signed before 2012

If you completed your separation agreement on or before Dec. 31, 2011, you and your former spouse fall under the old rules.

Here are the key facts to consider if you signed your separation agreement on or before Dec. 31, 2011, and the agreement assigned pension benefits to your former spouse to settle an equalization obligation.

  1. Under pension law, you can assign up to 50% of the pension accrued during your marriage to your former spouse.
  2. To divide your pension, we require a certified separation agreement or court order issued in Ontario. We can’t act on court orders from other jurisdictions.
  3. Pension benefits can be divided only when your pension begins or when we pay a termination of membership or death benefit.
  4. Both you and your spouse should seek independent legal and actuarial advice before agreeing to any benefit splitting arrangement. We can’t provide this advice.
  5. We need your written consent to supply personal information to your lawyer, actuary, former spouse or other third party.
  6. Commuted value estimates available for members  –  either online or in a printed statement  – aren't suitable for use in calculating assets in a marriage breakdown.
  7. If you haven't already, send us a copy of your signed agreement.

If your signed separation agreement didn't provide for the division of your pension, consult your family lawyer  –  you may be able to amend your agreement to fall under the rules that came into effect on Jan. 1,  2012.