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JGM
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 10913
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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My wife and I separated on very good terms in May 2013. We

Customer Question

My wife and I separated on very good terms in May 2013. We sold the house, pulled all of our assets (both joint and individual) and split them 50/50. This allowed both of us to start new lives a fresh, without any arguments over money.
We are now discussing divorce, and our pensions are the last asset to sort out. and have had our pension pots valued with CETVs from the date of marriage. I have always earned nearly twice what my wife has earned and that is reflected the CETVs that have come in so the valuations appear to be fair and consistent. The CETV difference is £76,000 between us, with her being "owed" £38000 as a result.
What do you advise at this stage for both of us to sort this out as the sum is not huge and there are no other assets to consider for divorce?
Some questions are,
1. What normally happens in this sort of case?
2. Could a CETV difference be settled with a cash payment of the same value to settle the pension difference?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Scots Law
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I am a solicitor in Scotland and will help you with this.
1. You can enter into a formal written minute of agreement, giving advance notice of the proposed pension share to the pension provider first and then a copy of the agreement (which has to be specially drafted to accord with the provisions of the legislation) is sent to the provider. The transfer must take place with a specified period of time after the divorce is granted.
2. You can settle the liability in cash instead and that protects your pension.
Happy to discuss further.
I hope this helps. Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Scots Law
Satisfied Customers: 10913
Experience: 30 years as a practising solicitor.
JGM and other Scots Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Many thanks for the reply.
Would it be best for us both now, to get lawyers each, share the CETV values with the supporting paperwork, come to an agreement, get it down on paper, and proceed? I am assuming that if CETV value has to be transferred, you need a solicitor and the decision of a court.
I am looking for the easiest and most straightforward path for both of us.Strange question this, can you do divorce with one lawyer?
Lastly, based on your previous answer, I take it a settlement, can be part pension value, part cash as well?
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
Yes that is what you will do,however, you don't need a court order in Scotland in respect of the pension share. You can use the Minute of Agreement which as I say has to be drafted in a particular way with a schedule giving full details of the parties, the scheme and the division.
The law on this is contained in:
1. The Divorce etc. (Pensions) (Scotland) Regulations 2000
and
2. The Pensions on Divorce etc. (Pension Sharing)(Scotland) Regulations 2000
You can look these up at legislation.gov.uk
One lawyer can't do a divorce for both parties. If you have no children under 16 you can do it yourself. You can get the form at www.scotcourts.gov.uk. Don't do this until everything else is completed.
Finally, you can do a part pension part cash agreement. It is very common.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you very much, this is very helpful to see the path along which this could work. We have no children which simplifies things.
I take it that this is much cheaper and easier than going to court, and going to court is really only used when a decision is needed when both sides cannot agree.From your experience, are CETVs reliable and fair, unlikely to be contested and that offsetting these values is the best and fairest approach?
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
That is correct. In Scotland the court would only ever have to be involved in the issue of financial provision if there was a conflict. A Minute of Agreement is by far the most economic way of dealing with the issue, the cost being in the hundreds as opposed to the thousands.
As far as a CETV is concerned this is the only value accepted by the courts. There is judicial authority to the effect that the proper value of a pension is the CETV except in certain special cases, armed forces being one example as far as I can recall.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This is very helpful to both of us. My final question is, the final settlement is done by mutual agreement? I cannot impose a solution, not that I would do that anyway.
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
Yes, you can't do an agreement unilaterally. You both have to agree.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Lastly I think, I did my CETV s a year after we separated. May 2014. Will these values still be good now? Will I need to get a revaluation? Are these values fixed at the dates issued?
Expert:  JGM replied 1 year ago.
The CETV should be the value as at the date of separation so you don't get a revaluation.

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