Am I entitled to my ex-husband’s pension plan? Do I need a lawyer?

Asked over 2 years ago - Savannah, GA

I am 63 years old and my ex-husband is 61. I have applied for his social security and I received a letter from Social Security saying that there is a pension under my ex-husband’s name that I may be entitled to. We were married 40 years and divorced about 3 years ago. This pension plan was not disclosed in the divorce settlement.

How much of it am I entitled to? Do I need a lawyer to get what I am entitled to?

Attorney answers (6)

  1. J. Thomas Salata

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    Contributor Level 12

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    Answered . You may be entitled to a portion of the pension benefit under several different theories including but not limited to social security law and a potential constructive trust situation under Georgia law. Yes, you need an attorney. The legal issues involved can be extremely complicated. A social security lawyer would be agood place to start.

  2. Glen Edward Ashman

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    Contributor Level 20

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    Best Answer
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    Answered . The time you needed a lawyer was in the divorce.

    If your divorce was in Georgia, the pension could have been divided, but ONLY if that was done in the divorce. If this pension was not awarded to you, then you lose. If it was, you can claim whatever he divorce says you can claim (hopefully a proper QDRO was drafted by your lawyer).

    If you feel your ex hid this pension from you, you MAY have rights to reopen your divorce. That would depend on factors not in your post.

  3. Delia T. Crouch

    Contributor Level 2

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    Answered . You need to seek immediate legal advice. In order to set aside the Final Decree of Divorce, assuming this was a Georgia divorce, you must file your motion within three years of the entry of the final decree. If you have a viable claim to set aside the final decree to assert a claim to your former husband's pension, you will need to assert your claim immediately. The viability of your claim will depend on the specific facts of your case. Since this is a statute of limitations issue you need to talk to a lawyer immediately.

    The viabililty of your claim will require a legal analysis of the specific facts of your divorce without which a... more
  4. Michael J Corbin

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . If this pension was not awarded to you in the divorce, then you are not "entitled" to any of it. Are you claiming that your ex hid this pension from you and that you didn't know of its existence? Then, you'll have to go back to court to attempt to get an award of some portion of it. Pension calculations are very complex.

    From the sounds of it, it may be an old, discontinued pension that your ex may not even remember having. It may not be worth much at all. You'll need an attorney.

    This answer is not to be considered a response to a specific legal issue in a specific jurisdiction - it is to be... more
  5. Judith H. Blumeno

    Contributor Level 7

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    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You don't say what state your divorce took place in. I can only tell you what applies in Michigan. In order for you to receive a portion of your husband's pension, there would have had to have been a provision in your divorce judgment identifying the pension and what portion you are entitled to.

    I recommend that you consult an attorney in the state in which you obtained your divorce to find out whether you can now get a portion of your ex-husband's pension.

    This answer is general information only. It may not be appropriate for the specific facts and circumstances of... more
  6. Clifford Michael Farrell

    Contributor Level 19

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    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Reposted under divorce as this is not a social security question. My other suggestion would be to call your divorce attorney immediately to discuss this.

    Good luck to you.

    The exact answers to questions like this require more information than presented. The answer(s) provided should... more

Related Topics

Divorce

Divorce is the process of formally ending a marriage. Divorces may be jointly agreed upon, resolved by negotiation, or decided in court.

Dividing Retirement Plans in a Divorce

If one spouse in a divorce has a retirement plan, it may be split between the parties. How the plan is split depends on its type and value.

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