Newsletter number 32,
Amendments to the Regulation respecting supplemental pension plans effective 4 January 2018, as well as
division V – Transfer of benefits between spouses of the
Regulation respecting supplemental pension plans, to find out the rules for partition applicable to spouses in a civil union, the changes to the payment methods applicable to the former spouse, and the calculation of member benefits after partition.
The cost of partition and issuance of the statement of benefits
The cost of partition and issuance of the statement of benefits are administration costs. They are assumed by the pension fund, unless the plan text provides otherwise. These costs cannot be charged to the spouses in the absence of a provision in the plan text.
This rule applies even where the administrator issues a statement that he is not required to issue under the
Supplemental Pension Plans Act .
Fees must be paid by both spouses
The administrator cannot charge fees to the member only or to the former spouse only. Fees must be charged to both spouses and must be the same for each. However, the spouses may agree to pay unequal portions of the total fees charged.
Fee schedule maximums
Issuance of the statement of benefits
Defined contribution plan ||
Defined contribution plan||
|Combination plan ||325 $|
|Defined benefit plan||250 $|
|Fixed benefit-fixed contribution plan||250 $|
Carrying out partition
Pension plan ||
|Defined contribution plan||100 $|
|Combination plan||200 $|
|Defined benefit plan||150 $|
|Fixed benefit-fixed contribution plan||150 $|
These fees are the maximum aggregate fees that can be charged to the spouses. They do not apply to fees charged to the administrator by an actuary. For example, the fees for a statement of benefits in a defined benefit plan limited to a maximum of $250, that is, 125 $ for each spouse.
If married spouses apply for a first statement showing the value of benefits at the end of the conjugal relationship, in the course of mediation and a second statement showing the value of benefits as at the date of institution of an action, the limit applies separately to both applications. Even where the two dates are shown on a single statement, the maximum fees can be charged twice.
Collection of fees by means of an offset
Fees payable by the spouses can be paid by reducing the benefits of the person who owes them by a corresponding amount. However, the spouses must always be asked first to pay the fees in some other manner.
The administrator can collect fees by means of an offset only if the spouse has received benefits as a result of partition.
Refusal to pay
Supplemental Pension Plans Act provides for obtaining a statement of benefits or partition of benefits in certain circumstances. The payment of fees is not a condition that must be met to obtain a statement or partition. Therefore, an administrator may not in any case refuse to act for the sole reason that the applicable fees have not been paid.
Application of the rules
Where an administrator issues a statement that does
not have to be issued under the
Supplemental Pension Plans Act, for example in the case of married spouses who are not in family mediation and who have not instituted an action in divorce, separation from bed and board or civil annulment of marriage, higher fees can be charges and they can be charged to only one of the spouses.
- In the event of a refusal to pay, the administrator cannot collect fees by reducing the benefits of the member or the spouse by means by an offset, but the administrator can refuse to issue the statement.
With respect to partition, where the Act does not give the spouses the right to partition, the administrator cannot decide to carry out partition since the member's benefits are not in that case transferable.
For more information