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Part IVPension sharing

Chapter IISharing of state scheme rights

48Activation of benefit sharing

(1)Section 49 applies on the taking effect of any of the following relating to a person’s shareable state scheme rights—

(a)a pension sharing order under the [1973 c. 18.] Matrimonial Causes Act 1973,

(b)provision which corresponds to the provision which may be made by such an order and which—

(i)is contained in a qualifying agreement between the parties to a marriage, and

(ii)takes effect on the dissolution of the marriage under the [1996 c. 27.] Family Law Act 1996,

(c)provision which corresponds to the provision which may be made by such an order and which—

(i)is contained in a qualifying agreement between the parties to a marriage or former marriage, and

(ii)takes effect after the dissolution of the marriage under the [1996 c. 27.] Family Law Act 1996,

(d)an order under Part III of the [1984 c. 42.] Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (financial relief in England and Wales in relation to overseas divorce etc.) corresponding to such an order as is mentioned in paragraph (a),

(e)a pension sharing order under the [1985 c. 37.] Family Law (Scotland) Act 1985,

(f)provision which corresponds to the provision which may be made by such an order and which—

(i)is contained in a qualifying agreement between the parties to a marriage,

(ii)is in such form as the Secretary of State may prescribe by regulations, and

(iii)takes effect on the grant, in relation to the marriage, of decree of divorce under the [1976 c. 39.] Divorce (Scotland) Act 1976 or of declarator of nullity,

(g)an order under Part IV of the [1984 c. 42.] Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (financial relief in Scotland in relation to overseas divorce etc.) corresponding to such an order as is mentioned in paragraph (e),

(h)a pension sharing order under Northern Ireland legislation, and

(i)an order under Part IV of the [S.I. 1989/677 (N.I. 4).] Matrimonial and Family Proceedings (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 (financial relief in Northern Ireland in relation to overseas divorce etc.) corresponding to such an order as is mentioned in paragraph (h).

(2)For the purposes of subsection (1)(b) and (c), a qualifying agreement is one which—

(a)has been entered into in such circumstances as the Lord Chancellor may prescribe by regulations, and

(b)satisfies such requirements as the Lord Chancellor may so prescribe.

(3)For the purposes of subsection (1)(f), a qualifying agreement is one which—

(a)has been entered into in such circumstances as the Secretary of State may prescribe by regulations, and

(b)is registered in the Books of Council and Session.

(4)Subsection (1)(b) does not apply if the provision relates to rights which are the subject of a pension sharing order under the [1973 c. 18.] Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 in relation to the marriage.

(5)Subsection (1)(c) does not apply if—

(a)the marriage was dissolved by an order under section 3 of the [1996 c. 27.] Family Law Act 1996 (divorce not preceded by separation) and the satisfaction of the requirements of section 9(2) of that Act (settlement of future financial arrangements) was a precondition to the making of the order,

(b)the provision relates to rights which are the subject of a pension sharing order under the [1973 c. 18.] Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 in relation to the marriage, or

(c)shareable state scheme rights have already been the subject of pension sharing between the parties.

(6)For the purposes of this section, an order or provision falling within subsection (1)(e), (f) or (g) shall be deemed never to have taken effect if the Secretary of State does not receive before the end of the period of 2 months beginning with the relevant date—

(a)copies of the relevant matrimonial documents, and

(b)such information relating to the transferor and transferee as the Secretary of State may prescribe by regulations under section 34(1)(b)(ii).

(7)The relevant date for the purposes of subsection (6) is—

(a)in the case of an order or provision falling within subsection (1)(e) or (f), the date of the extract of the decree or declarator responsible for the divorce or annulment to which the order or provision relates, and

(b)in the case of an order falling within subsection (1)(g), the date of disposal of the application under section 28 of the [1984 c. 42.] Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984.

(8)The reference in subsection (6)(a) to the relevant matrimonial documents is—

(a)in the case of an order falling within subsection (1)(e) or (g), to copies of the order and the order, decree or declarator responsible for the divorce or annulment to which it relates, and

(b)in the case of provision falling within subsection (1)(f), to—

(i)copies of the provision and the order, decree or declarator responsible for the divorce or annulment to which it relates, and

(ii)documentary evidence that the agreement containing the provision is one to which subsection (3)(a) applies.

(9)The sheriff may, on the application of any person having an interest, make an order—

(a)extending the period of 2 months referred to in subsection (6), and

(b)if that period has already expired, providing that, if the Secretary of State receives the documents and information concerned before the end of the period specified in the order, subsection (6) is to be treated as never having applied.