Pensions on divorce in Ireland: law, practice and a way forward?
Keywords:pension, ancillary relief, financial provision, reform
The importance of pensions as a source of family wealth has attracted increased attention during the first decades of the twenty-first century. In particular, ever-greater focus is now being placed in many jurisdictions on how the wealth held in pensions is factored into financial remedies on marital breakdown. Notwithstanding that pension entitlements may also be some of the most valuable assets available for distribution on separation or divorce in Ireland, the Irish approach to pensions and pension adjustment orders on marital breakdown has attracted minimal comment or analysis. This article seeks to address this gap in the literature. It pulls together for the first time findings from various studies to investigate the prevalence of pension adjustment orders, specifically, in Irish divorce practice. Reflecting on these findings and the Supreme Court’s recent 2019 judgment in F v M, it analyses the regime and considers a multifaceted approach to reform.