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divorce and pension plan


Guest Uan5

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help, trying to get what is my fair share without much coop from spouse. He has 3 pension plans that I don't understand. He works for the local township where we live and has a defined benefit plan fully funded by the employer. He says it has no cash value and if he leaves employer he longer is eligible to collect from this. He says it has no cash value and is not covered by ERISA. He also has 2 personal plans he pays into, one he calls a PEDC and the other an annuity. I don't know where to start. He refuses to talk about a post marital agreement unless I sign divorce papers and I cannot do this. I didn't want the divorce and cannot condone it. He can get a divorce anyway in two years with or without my signature. If it helps I am in the state of Pa. UAN5@aol.com

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Sounds like you need a divorce lawyer ASAP. A governmental plan is not required to comply with federal rules concerning division of assets in divorce. On the other hand, a governmental plan is required to comply with applicable state and local laws (both those governing division of assets generally, and those governing treatment of pension assets). Someone with experience in the local law of that municipality could advise you on your rights.

The mere fact that benefits under the plan are not vested if he leaves does not cause his plan benefit to have no value. In the first place, even when employer-provided benefits are not vested, a plan may well provide for a lump sum payout of employee contributions plus interest. In the second place, even if you cannot get an immediate cash settlement on the plan, you may (depending on state and local law) be able to arrange to get a percentage of the benefit if and when it is paid out.

Obviously, I cannot provide you with legal advice outside of an attorney-client relationship. And since I'm not in Pennsylvania, I probably wouldn't be the best person to provide you with advice anyway. But as someone who has been through a divorce, complete with division of pension assets, I can strongly advise you to consult a divorce lawyer with experience in your jurisdiction right away.

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Employee benefits legal resource site

Employee benefits legal resource site

The opinions of my postings are my own and do not necessarily represent my law firm's position, strategies, or opinions. The contents of my postings are offered for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. A visit to this board or an exchange of information through this board does not create an attorney-client relationship. You should consult directly with an attorney for individual advice regarding your particular situation. I am not your lawyer under any circumstances.

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