Relationship Breakdown

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

Alberta legislation has changed regarding the division of pension benefits in the event of a relationship breakdown.
Beginning March 1, 2019, both married and common-law pension partners can now divide their pension benefits according to a family property Order or Agreement.

If you have gone through a relationship breakdown, we are sorry to hear it. There are several things to know when it comes to your pension and though it can get rather technical, we are here to help you. 

A member's pension is considered matrimonial property and can be divided with a spouse or partner meeting the definition of pension partner upon the breakdown of the relationship. 

It is very important to note that not every separation or divorce results in a member's pension being divided. You and your spouse can agree that other assets of equal value can cover anything owed, or you and your spouse might agree not to divide anything at all, which would leave your LAPP pension unaffected. 

Whatever you and your spouse decide to do regarding your LAPP pension, please contact us and let us know as soon as possible.

 

Total Entitlement Estimate

If you have a pension partner and are facing a relationship breakdown, an important first step is determining the value of your pension. A Total Entitlement Estimate is a statement of the value of your LAPP pension benefit at the time the relationship breaks down and can be requested from us in writing. 

You or your pension partner can request a Total Entitlement Estimate, however, please note that when one person requests a Total Entitlement Estimate, the spouse or partner is also sent an estimate. 

After receiving a Total Entitlement Estimate, you and your partner can decide whether to divide your pension or instead consider the value of your pension when dividing all your family property assets.

Requests for a Total Entitlement Estimate must be made in writing and contain the following:

  • the signature of the person making the request; 
  • the full names, current addresses, and current phone numbers for both the LAPP member and their partner; 
    • the contact information provided for you/your partner can also be care of your lawyer and/or your partner’s lawyer; and
  • the beginning and end dates of the period of joint accrual (this is normally the time the parties were married or living together)

Who Can Request a Total Entitlement Estimate?
A request can be made by:

  • you,
  • your lawyer, 
  • your partner, or 
  • your partner’s lawyer. 

Please submit the Total Entitlement request via the Secure Mailbox (available by logging into your secure pension profile), by mail or by fax.

If either of your lawyers will be requesting information on your behalf, you and your partner must provide an authorization allowing the disclosure of this information to each of your respective lawyer(s). Contact us for information about how to provide this authorization.

NOT Dividing Your Pension Benefit

If your pension benefit isn't being divided but you've obtained an Order or fully executed Agreement that confirms that your pension won't be divided, please send us a court-certified copy of your Order or a copy of your Agreement via one of the methods below.

Mail/In-person:

Local Authorities Pension Plan
c/o Alberta Pensions Services Corporation
5103 Windermere Blvd. SW
Edmonton AB  T6W 0S9

There is an after-hours drop box located outside the front doors for your convenience.

Fax: 780-421-1652

Dividing Your Pension Benefit

1.  Request a Total Entitlement Estimate which will provide you and your partner with information about the value of your pension benefit. 

2.  Decide whether you will be using an Order or Agreement to divide your pension.

If you choose to use an Order:

3. Start drafting your Order
For more information on the process to obtain an Order, please speak to a lawyer.

Your Order must set out:

  • the beginning and end dates of the period of joint accrual;
  • the "division factor," which is the percentage share of the jointly accrued benefit which is awarded to your partner. The division factor must not exceed 50%; and
  • whether or not there is to be a delayed division if your partner is eligible.

It is recommended that your draft Order be reviewed by us prior to proceeding to the next step.

4. File Your Order with the Court; obtain a Court-Certified Copy
An Order is not enforceable until it has been signed by a judge and filed by a clerk of the Court. The court-certified copy of your Order must be stamped as a true copy of the original and signed by a clerk of the Court.

5. Submit a Court-Certified Copy of Your Order
The court-certified copy of your Order is required to divide your pension benefit. This copy must be sent or delivered to LAPP via one of the following methods:

Mail/In-person:

Local Authorities Pension Plan
c/o Alberta Pensions Services Corporation
5103 Windermere Blvd. SW
Edmonton AB T6W 0S9

There is an after-hours drop box located outside the front doors for your convenience.

Fax: 780-421-1652

If you choose to use an Agreement:

3. Start drafting your Agreement
For more information on the process to obtain an Agreement, please speak to a lawyer.

Your Agreement must set out:

  • the beginning and end dates of the period of joint accrual;
  • the "division factor," which is the percentage share of the jointly accrued benefit which is awarded to your partner. The division factor must not exceed 50%; and
  • whether or not there is to be a delayed division if your partner is eligible; and
  • a written acknowledgement from each of the partners, made apart from the other partner:
    • that the partner is aware of the nature and the effect of the Agreement;
    • that the partner is aware of the possible future claims to property the partner may have under the Family Property Act, Matrimonial Property Act or Adult Interdependent Relationships Act (whichever legislation is applicable) and that the partner intends to give up these claims to the extent necessary to give effect to the Agreement, and
    • that the partner is executing the Agreement freely and voluntarily without any compulsion on the part of the other partner; and

each written acknowledgement referred to above must be made before a lawyer other than the lawyer acting for the other partner or before whom the acknowledgement is made by the other partner.

It is recommended that your draft Agreement be reviewed by us prior to proceeding to the next step.

4. Complete your Agreement
An Agreement is not administrable unless it includes all the formal requirements outlined above.

5. Submit your Agreement
A complete Agreement is required to divide your pension benefit. The copy must be sent or delivered to LAPP via one of the following methods:

Mail/In-person:

Local Authorities Pension Plan
c/o Alberta Pensions Services Corporation
5103 Windermere Blvd. SW
Edmonton AB T6W 0S9

There is an after-hours drop box located outside the front doors for your convenience.

Fax: 780-421-1652