Division of Retirement Income

Can you claim from a compulsory annuity on divorce? 

The income from a compulsory annuity CANNOT be split in the case of divorce...


The fact that a non member ex spouse can claim a portion of the member spouse’s retirement fund on divorce is well established. However what will happen in the case where the divorce occurs after retirement and the spouse is now receiving an income from his retirement funds?


In terms of legislation, a compulsory annuity (including a living annuity) may not during the lifetime of the retired person be commuted or assigned to another person. Therefore the annuitant may not enter into an agreement to transfer a portion of the annuity to any other person.




The amount of income received from a compulsory annuity may be taken into account in determining the client’s maintenance obligations on divorce. Thus the client’s income from his annuity could result in a higher maintenance payment to his ex spouse.


However this maintenance payment would be independent from the payment of the annuity. The annuitant would in practice receive the full income from the annuity and then could pay a portion of the income to another person. This means you will be dependant on him paying the maintenance to you every month. There is a risk that should he die or withhold the payment that you might be cash strapped.


Perhaps look at other assets to generate an income. If there is a property in the estate that you could rent out, rather claim that in your settlement.


Take Action:


  • It is important to maintain an individual retirement plan when you are married.
  • In the event of divorce you  would at least have some form of retirement income to rely on, without having to claim from your  former spouses.
  • Every woman needs a financial plan!
  • Financial Planning is for free, ensure that you have the right financial structures in place.


Contact:info@divorcesmart.co.za to assist you with your financial future.

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