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Questions and Answers About Pension Division on the Breakdown of a Relationship in British Columbia (2015-2016)

Overview

British Columbia’s Family Law Act now extends the family property regime to long-term marriage-like relationships as well as legal marriages, with the result that pensions belonging to persons in marriage-like relationships have become subject to division on the breakdown of those relationships under Part 6 of the Act.

The new Pensions Benefit Standards Act and its supporting regulations came into force in September 2015, modernizing key benefits and largely harmonizing with Alberta’s pension legislation. BCLI has responded to the new pension benefits legislation by updating its Questions and Answers on Pension Division at the Breakdown of a Relationship resource, last published in March 2013 when it was updated in order to anticipate the coming into force of the Family Law Act and the changes in Part 6 of the Act. This is the fourth revision of the Questions and Answers materials – an ongoing project dating back to March 1996.

This update examines the new upcoming changes to pensions benefits standards, it reflects the effect of ancillary provisions in British Columbia’s Family Law Act, as well as reviews developments in the common law since 2013 in British Columbia courts. By performing this update, the Questions and Answers materials remains an up-to-date practice resource for the BC legal community, other professionals, and members of the general public.

As with the past publications, BCLI has worked closely with Tom Anderson Q.C. of Anderson Pension Law Consulting for this update.

Update (February 21, 2019):
BCLI launched a new project to review Pension Division under Part 6 of the Family Law Act.

Keywords:

pension, division, spouse, marriage, breakdown, divorce, dissolution, termination, defined benefit, defined contribution, hybrid, plan, PBSA, RRSP, RRIF, LIF, extraprovincial, survivor, disability, transfer, benefit

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