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Ex-husband's Pension

Started 1281467335.1 in Among Friends | Last reply 1289782318.77 by Lakk

Has anybody been divorced and receives part of your ex-husband's pension? My ex-husband has retired since March and I am still waiting for my part of his NYS pension. It is the law that if you had a DRO at the time of the divorce and had been married more than ten years a wife will receive part of the ex-husband's pension. Has anyone gone through this? How long does it take for the payment? I live in New York State. Last time I called they told me I would receive a letter stating how long it would be and the amount each month I would receive.

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Kookielady1281468063.98841 PostsRegistered 11/14/2005

What is the DRO? Thanks.

Pasta Lover1281474264.6430 PostsRegistered 8/10/2010

A DRO is the Domestics Relations Order drawn up at the time of the divorce.

Woodsy Wom­an1281474407.5174227 PostsRegistered 8/27/2007

I don't think I would want to give my ex husband or ex wife any of my pension, if I had one. Doesn't seem fair to me JMHO.

~~ The world is a wonderful place and everyone should shut up and enjoy it every once in a while. ~~

chrystaltr­ee1281474492.52712636 PostsRegistered 5/10/2010

Shouldn't your lawyer handle it? Personally, If I needed the pension money, I don't think I would just sit back and wait for the checks to come rolling in. You really should be proactive.

Dawnie1281474646.933712 PostsRegistered 8/22/2007SW Florida

I was working when I divorced. My husband bought me out on my pension. I got to keep it all to myself.

Gooday1281474677.29710390 PostsRegistered 1/20/2008

I am pretty sure that should have been decided upon at the time of the divorce. Are you saying it was in the decree that when he retired you get "x" amount. Most of the people I know that were married for a while left the exes pension alone in exchange for a bigger share of the house buyout.

brenbren1281474813.9331215 PostsRegistered 11/28/2007The South

I know if you were married at least ten years, you are eligible for his Social Security benefits if you are the age and your income doesn't exceed one third of his benefit. After my ex filed for his retirement, I was contacted by Social Security to apply. My sister and one of my daughters work for SS, and told me when I retired ten years ago, that my Federal Retirement pension would eliminate my eligibilty due to it exceeding the limit. Just as they said, I received a letter from SS stating that very reason.

My mother had the option of selecting my father's or my step-father's. She received a check until her death at 84 years old.

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catlady61281475170.477203 PostsRegistered 4/6/2010

i get half of my exs' pension and i get it until i die not him. its been a long time, but if i remember correctly, i did get a letter stating how much and when it would start. its been over 10 years. i had to wait until he was 59 1/2 before i would see any money. i believe it took a few months for everything to start.

you are also entitled to part of his social security. of course my lawyer never told me this.

i read it on the social security website when i applied for my ss. i don't know if i can still put in for it, since it wasn't done at the time of the divorce. i'm debating whether to get a new lawyer and ask. i would love to get part of that and to see the look on his face. money is the only thing he cares about, it would be divine justice. i also live in new york, queens.

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Bettyboope­rs1281475599.9324 PostsRegistered 8/10/2010

Maybe you have to apply for it. I was eligible for x hubby's SS benefits, but as a SS rep told me, "you aren't gonna get it if you don't apply for it".

chrystaltr­ee1281475603.07312636 PostsRegistered 5/10/2010
On 8/10/2010 RachelJ said:

I don't think I would want to give my ex husband or ex wife any of my pension, if I had one. Doesn't seem fair to me JMHO.

It's not fair, if they were married for only 10 years. 10 years is nothing when it comes to a marriage. However, if they were married 20 years or more, then it's definitely fair and appropriate. Especially if a long time wife spent was a housewife or spent a considerable amount of time as a sahm. I think that's the problem with legislation like that. It kow tows to the women's movements and is far to lenient. The intent is good but they often go too far in their zeal to punish men. Cashing in on a man's pension after a measly ten years, that just isn't right.

chrystaltr­ee1281475744.1112636 PostsRegistered 5/10/2010
On 8/10/2010 Bettyboopers said:

Maybe you have to apply for it. I was eligible for x hubby's SS benefits, but as a SS rep told me, "you aren't gonna get it if you don't apply for it".

Yup. I think you are dead on. It's only matter of common sense. How would the pension board know about an ex wife, how would the know she wants the money, how would they know her court ordered support agreement entitled her to part of her ex's pensions???? She would have to apply and and submit the required documentation. I doubt that talking to clerk on the phone will do anything.

JuicyFruit1281475846.6473354 PostsRegistered 9/5/2009
On 8/10/2010 chrystaltree said:
On 8/10/2010 RachelJ said:

I don't think I would want to give my ex husband or ex wife any of my pension, if I had one. Doesn't seem fair to me JMHO.

It's not fair, if they were married for only 10 years. 10 years is nothing when it comes to a marriage. However, if they were married 20 years or more, then it's definitely fair and appropriate. Especially if a long time wife spent was a housewife or spent a considerable amount of time as a sahm. I think that's the problem with legislation like that. It kow tows to the women's movements and is far to lenient. The intent is good but they often go too far in their zeal to punish men. Cashing in on a man's pension after a measly ten years, that just isn't right.

Very interesting comment. Isn't it the state law that determines the length of the marriage and what is received? And if so, isn't that what is then applied?

catlady61281476816.123203 PostsRegistered 4/6/2010
On 8/10/2010 chrystaltree said:
On 8/10/2010 RachelJ said:

I don't think I would want to give my ex husband or ex wife any of my pension, if I had one. Doesn't seem fair to me JMHO.

It's not fair, if they were married for only 10 years. 10 years is nothing when it comes to a marriage. However, if they were married 20 years or more, then it's definitely fair and appropriate. Especially if a long time wife spent was a housewife or spent a considerable amount of time as a sahm. I think that's the problem with legislation like that. It kow tows to the women's movements and is far to lenient. The intent is good but they often go too far in their zeal to punish men. Cashing in on a man's pension after a measly ten years, that just isn't right.

you must be a man....

i was married for 12 years, felt like 20, had 2 children with him, i was entitled to over $200.00 per week, he gave me $90.00. thank goodness i was able to get a full time job since i had my mom and sister to look after my children.

i don't think its fair to say that people should be married for 20 years to get anything. you don't know the facts about the marriages and the circumstances leading up to a divorce.

purrmom1281477639.83400 PostsRegistered 5/27/2010Mid-MO

Catlady6. Check with Social Security to see if your benefits would be higher using his record instead of yours; however, it won't change the amount of his social security check. You don't need an attorney & it did not have to be done at the time of the divorce. Just call Social Security.

catlady61281477912.087203 PostsRegistered 4/6/2010
On 8/10/2010 purrmom said:

Catlady6. Check with Social Security to see if your benefits would be higher using his record instead of yours; however, it won't change the amount of his social security check. You don't need an attorney & it did not have to be done at the time of the divorce. Just call Social Security.

thank you soooo much, i will do that.

judgejudith1281480560.2971184 PostsRegistered 12/14/2005Omaha

Regarding SS payments to spouses and ex-spouses, I'm in the camp that believes that this is part of the problem...people who don't pay in receiving benefits. If you didn't work and pay in I don't see why you should receive benefits. No workie...no checkie.

Other pensions may be a different story.

PS: I worked outside the home and was also a wife and a mother (working in the home), only instead of having all day to perform my household tasks I only had the evenings and week-ends.


millieshops1281481090.16715088 PostsRegistered 3/15/2007

I don't know how long it takes, but if your DRO was properly filed it would make sense it should start when your ex starts receiving his share. Where's your share going if you're not already getting it? To your ex?

And while some might say giving the ex a share of a pension isn't fair, I say it's just a part of the negotiation. Some spouses don't want to give up valuable cars or other assets at the time of the divorce and negotiate away a piece of their pension as a way to create some equality.

ennui1281481501.9219957 PostsRegistered 4/17/2007
On 8/10/2010 catlady6 said:
On 8/10/2010 chrystaltree said:
On 8/10/2010 RachelJ said:

I don't think I would want to give my ex husband or ex wife any of my pension, if I had one. Doesn't seem fair to me JMHO.

It's not fair, if they were married for only 10 years. 10 years is nothing when it comes to a marriage. However, if they were married 20 years or more, then it's definitely fair and appropriate. Especially if a long time wife spent was a housewife or spent a considerable amount of time as a sahm. I think that's the problem with legislation like that. It kow tows to the women's movements and is far to lenient. The intent is good but they often go too far in their zeal to punish men. Cashing in on a man's pension after a measly ten years, that just isn't right.

you must be a man....

I'm not a man, and I'm not sure it's fair. I wouldn't want to share my pension; I'm the one who worked. I think alimony and child support should be enough.

"Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things." ~ Robert Brault

wishylady1281481893.95729 PostsRegistered 7/7/2010

You can automatically claim half of your exes SS benefits when he reaches retirement age and starts collecting as long as you have not been remarried at any time. This does not have to be included in the DRO.

In my state, the rights to the pension have to be spelled out at the time of the divorce-DRO. If it's not included specifically it is my understanding you can't claim it later.

At any rate, you need to consult your attorney who can clear this up for you. Good Luck!

GYMGOER11281481918.1711 PostsRegistered 8/10/2010

CATLADY YOUR LAYER SHOULD HAVE SENT A FORM SIGNED BY YOU ( AND YOUR HUSBAND ) TO YOUR HUSBANDS COMPANY.S PENSON MANAGER THAT YOU WOULD BE FILING FOR YOUR HALF OF HIS PENSION AT HIS RETIREMENT IT IS A LAW MEANT TO PROTECT WOMEN THAT WORKED AT LOW PAYING JOBS OR STAY AT HOME MOMS IF YOU WERE MARRIED MORE THAN TEN YEARS AND DID NOT AGREE TO SETTLE FOR A LARGER SETTLEMENT AT THE TIME OF YOUR DIVORCE YOU GET HALF OF WHAT HIS PENSON WAS AT TIME OF DIVORCE PAPERS WERE SIGNED (not what it is worth at his retirement ) THIS HAPENED TO ME MY EX TRYED TO BUY ME OUT OF HIS PENSON I DID NOT TAKE IT AND NOW I GET A CHECK MONTHLY PLUS SS hope this helps

Missey11281482281.193174 PostsRegistered 12/21/2008Sierra Foothills CA

I think you can apply for your husbands pension. I'm sure it depends on the state you live in. Social Security, definitely yes, and when you apply for yourself, they will ask/advise you whether you should use his or yours. Providing you were married at least 10 years.

My ex had to show our divorce papers before they (county) would release his retirement. It so happened that we both worked for the same county. I think that is one of the questions they ask when one applies for retirement "have you been married before". To be honest , I can't remember as I filled out the same retirement papers. The employer does not want someone coming back later with a claom. I did not have to show divorce papers. We were not married for 10 years. He, however, enticed (lured) 4 other women to marry him, LOL, and I know one of those he paid off in his divorce settlement. We are friends and he is now married to someone who could be his daughter (age wise). Oh well who would have known 50 years ago. I was young.

edited for typo

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millieshops1281482504.8715088 PostsRegistered 3/15/2007

When the SS laws were writtten, women were not nearly as much a part of the workforce as they are today, so the law gave protection to women who kept the homes going. It was a social engineering kind of thing - the men who made the laws (how many women were part of Congress then?) wanted women at home and knew they had to provide for them once the wage earners were gone.

It wasn't until the mid-60's that women started to forge an equality of opportunity in the employment world and started to be more able to save for their own retirement. Still, many women spend far fewer years in the workforce, work at jobs that on average pay less than their male counterparts, save far less toward their retirements, and consequently make up a huge percentage of the elderly living in poverty.

Maybe it's time to change the SS law, but I was never a SAHM so it would not be a negative for me. Anyone else want to chime in???

GYMGOER11281483067.4511 PostsRegistered 8/10/2010

THIS IS A FEDERAL LAW NOT A STATE LAW IT DOES NOT MATTER WHERE YOU LIVE IF IT WAS BROUGHT BEFORE THE JUDGE AT TIME OF DIVORCE AND YOUR LAWYER FILED THE CORT PAPERS WITH THE PENSON BOARD WHITCH HE SHOULD HAVE AND GAVE YOU AND YOUR EX A COPY THE PENSION BOARD OF YOUR EX S PENSION PLAN SHOULD NOTIFY YOU WHEN HE FILLES FOR HIS PENSION

qvcfreak1281483243.1275944 PostsRegistered 3/14/2005
On 8/10/2010 RachelJ said:

I don't think I would want to give my ex husband or ex wife any of my pension, if I had one. Doesn't seem fair to me JMHO.

I work for the state and money is deducted every month from my paycheck to go into Retirement. My X's job didn't offer a retirement plan, he was using all his paycheck for us, while I was putting away money every month. Since he didn't have a Retirment plan, I was putting $200 a month into a 401K for his Retirement. We divorced this January after 19 yrs of marriage and he left me everything, home, Retirment and 401K, he didn't want anything. Had he asked for 1/2 I think it is more than fair. I know I would've asked for it had it been the other way around. He is also giving me way more Child Support than he is suppose to. I was very blessed.

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