HC Deb 04 July 1995 vol 263 cc206-11 24B—(1) On granting a decree of divorce, a decree of nullity of marriage or a decree of judicial separation or at any time thereafter (whether, in the case of a decree of divorce or of nullity of marriage, before or after the decree is made absolute), the court may make a pensions adjustment order (referred to in this section as "an order") for the benefit of a party to the marriage. (2) An order shall where the court so determines bind a person who is not a party to the marriage but who is liable to pay any benefit under a pension scheme to a party to the marriage or any successor to such a person. (3) An order is an order adjusting the rights and benefits to which either party to the marriage is or may become entitled to under any pension scheme and in particular the court may by such an order require—
  1. (a) either party to the marriage to pay to the other such lump sum or sums as may be specified in the order (without prejudice to any other order which may be made under section 23(1) or (3)); or
  2. (b) the administrator of a pension scheme to treat the party to the marriage in favour of whom the order is to be made as a member of the pension scheme in relation to such benefits as may be specified in the order which were acquired by the other party to the marriage before the decree of divorce or nullity was made absolute or before the decree of judicial separation, or
  3. (c) the administrator of a pension scheme to make such payment or payments as may be specified in the order into such other pension schemes as may be nominated by the party to the marriage in favour of whom the order is made, or
  4. (d) the administrator of a pension scheme to pay such part of any pension as may be specified in the order to the party in favour of whom the order is made for such term as may be specified not extending beyond the death of either party to the marriage, or
  5. (e) the administrator of a pension scheme to pay such part of any dependant's pension as may be specified in the order to the party in favour of whom the order is made for such term as may be specified beginning with the death of the other party to the marriage and not extending beyond the death of the party in whose favour the order is made, or
  6. (f) either party to the marriage to pay such administrative costs incurred by the administrator of the pension scheme in responding to any application for an order or in implementing an order.

(4) An order shall not be made—

  1. (a) under subsection (3)(b) above unless the administrator of the pension scheme consents to membership of the pension scheme for the party to the marriage who is not already a member of the pension scheme, or
  2. (b) under subsection (3)(c) above unless the court is satisfied that the administrator of the pension scheme nominated by the party in whose favour the order may be made has agreed to accept such payment or payments, and in the event of the administrator being unwilling to accept such payment or payments he may be required to notify the parties to the marriage and the court.

(5) It shall be the duty of the court in deciding whether to exercise its powers under this section and, if so, in what manner to have regard in particular to—
  1. (a) the matters referred to in section 25 save for the words "in the foreseeable future" in section 25(2)(a), (b) and (f), and
  2. (b) the effect that child care or other domestic responsibilities have had or will have on the ability of each of the parties to the marriage to make provision for his retirement, and
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  4. (c) any administrative complexity or cost to the administrator of the pension scheme.
(6) The Secretary of State in agreement with the Lord Chancellor shall by regulations provide for the date and method of valuation to be applied by the court to rights under a pension scheme when making an order and to provide for notice of any application for an order to be given to the administrator of the pension scheme. (7) The Secretary of State may by regulations make such provision as may be appropriate to meet the special circumstances of unfunded public sector schemes by varying or excluding the powers of the court under this section. (8) Nothing in the provisions mentioned in subsection (9) below applies to a court exercising its powers under this section. (9) The provisions referred to in subsection (8) are—
  1. (a) section 203(1) and (2) of the Army Act 1955, section 203(1) and (2) of the Air Force Act 1955, section 128G(1) and (2) of the Naval Discipline Act 1957 or section 159(4) of the Pension Schemes Act 1993 (which prevent assignment or orders being made restraining a person from receiving anything which he is prevented from assigning);
  2. (b) section 84 of the Pensions Act 1995;
  3. (c) any provision for any enactment corresponding to any of the enactments mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (b); and
  4. (d) any provision of the pension scheme in question.
(10) the making of an order shall in no circumstances form the basis of any decision made by the Commissioners of Inland Revenue to remove the exempt approved status or to alter the tax status of a pension scheme provided that—
  1. (a) the party to the marriage in whose favour an order has been made shall be treated for the purpose of retention of benefits as the member; and
  2. (b) the maximum benefits payable to and in respect of the party to the marriage whose rights have been varied by the order shall be limited to the benefits that would have been payable if the order had not been made.
(11) No order or orders shall be made which shall have the effect of increasing the liabilities of any pension scheme beyond those which might have been incurred had the parties to the marriage remained married until the death of the party against whom the order is to be made. (12) After paragraphs (2)(f) of section 31 there shall be inserted: "(g) any order made under section 24B(3)(d) or (e) above"

(13) After subparagraph (ii) in section 35(2) there shall be inserted: or (iii) by adjusting the rights and benefits to which either party to the marriage is or may become entitled under any pension scheme.

(14) Nothing in this section shall affect any proceedings commenced before the commencement of this section.

(15) In this section— "administrator" means the trustees of an occupational pension scheme or the administrators or managers of such a scheme in the absence of trustees or the administrators or managers of a personal pension plan; "member" means a member of an occupational pension scheme or a person having a personal pension plan or retirement benefit plan or other similar arrangement; and "pension scheme" means an occupational pension scheme or personal pension scheme or retirement benefit plan or other similar arrangement.'.—[Mr. Dewar.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

Motion made, and Question put, That the clause be read a Second time:—

The House divided: Ayes 247, Noes 292.

Division No. 193] [7.30 pm
Abbott, Ms Diane Fatchett, Derek
Adams, Mrs Irene Faulds, Andrew
Ainger, Nick Field, Frank (Birkenhead)
Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE) Flynn, Paul
Alton, David Forsythe, Clifford (S Antrim)
Armstrong, Hilary Foster, Rt Hon Derek
Ashton, Joe Foster, Don (Bath)
Banks, Tony (Newham NW) Foulkes, George
Barnes, Harry Fraser, John
Barron, Kevin Fyfe, Maria
Battle, John Galloway, George
Bayley, Hugh Garrett, John
Beckett, Rt Hon Margaret Gerrard, Neil
Beggs, Roy Godman, Dr Norman A
Bell, Stuart Godsiff, Roger
Benn, Rt Hon Tony Golding, Mrs Llin
Bennett, Andrew F Gordon, Mildred
Bermingham, Gerald Graham, Thomas
Berry, Roger Grant, Bernie (Tottenham)
Betts, Clive Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Blunkett, David Grocott, Bruce
Boateng, Paul Gunnell, John
Bray, Dr Jeremy Hain, Peter
Brown, N (N'c'tle upon Tyne E) Hall, Mike
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon) Harman, Ms Harriet
Burden, Richard Hattersley, Rt Hon Roy
Byers, Stephen Henderson, Doug
Caborn, Richard Hill, Keith (Streatham)
Callaghan, Jim Hinchliffe, David
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge) Hodge, Margaret
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V) Hoey, Kate
Campbell-Savours, D N Hogg, Norman (Cumbernauld)
Cann, Jamie Home Robertson, John
Carlile, Alexander (Montgomery) Hood, Jimmy
Chidgey, David Hoon, Geoffrey
Chisholm, Malcolm Howarth, George (Knowsley North)
Church, Judith Howells, Dr. Kim (Pontypridd)
Clapham, Michael Hoyle, Doug
Clark, Dr David (South Shields) Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N)
Clarke, Tom (Monkands W) Hughes, Robert (Aberdeen N)
Clelland, David Hughes, Roy (Newport E)
Clwyd, Mrs Ann Hutton, John
Coffey, Ann Illsley, Eric
Cohen, Harry Ingram, Adam
Connarty, Michael Jackson, Glenda (H'stead)
Corbett, Robin Jackson, Helen (Shef'ld, H)
Corbyn, Jeremy Jamieson, David
Corston, Jean Janner, Greville
Cousins, Jim Johnston, Sir Russell
Cummings, John Jones, Barry (Alyn and D'side)
Cunliffe, Lawrence Jones, leuan Wyn (Ynys Môn)
Cunningham, Jim(Covy SE) Jones, Lynne (B'ham S O)
Cunningham, Roseanna Jones, Martyn (Clwyd, SW)
Dalyell, Tam Jones, Nigel (Cheltenham)
Darling, Alistair Jowell, Tessa
Davidson, Ian Keen, Alan
Davies, Bryan (Oldham C'tral) Kennedy, Jane (L'pool Br'dg'n)
Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli) Khabra, Piara S
Davies, Ron (Caerphilly) Kilfoyle, Peter
Davis, Terry (B'ham, H'dge H'l) Kirkwood, Archy
Denham, John Lestor, Joan (Eccles)
Dewar, Donald Lewis, Terry
Dixon, Don Liddell, Mrs Helen
Dobson, Frank Litherland, Robert
Donohoe, Brian H Livingstone, Ken
Dowd, Jim Lloyd, Tony (Stretford)
Dunnachie, Jimmy Llwyd, Elfyn
Dunwoody, Mrs Gwyneth Loyden, Eddie
Eagle, Ms Angela Lynne, Ms Liz
Eastham, Ken McAllion, John
Etherington, Bill McAvoy, Thomas
Evans, John (St Helens N) McCartney, Robert
Ewing, Mrs Margaret Macdonald, Calum
McFall, John Robertson, George (Hamilton)
McKelvey, William Robinson, Geoffrey (Co'try NW)
Mackinlay, Andrew Roche, Mrs Barbara
McLeish, Henry Rogers, Allan
Maclennan, Robert Rooker, Jeff
McMaster, Gordon Rooney, Terry
McNamara, Kevin Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)
MacShane, Denis Ross, William (E Londonderry)
McWilliam, John Ruddock, Joan
Madden, Max Salmond, Alex
Mandelson, Peter Sedgemore, Brian
Marek, Dr John Sheerman, Barry
Marshall, David (Shettleston) Sheldon, Rt Hon Robert
Marshall, Jim (Leicester, S) Short, Clare
Martin, Michael J (Springburn) Simpson, Alan
Martlew, Eric Skinner, Dennis
Maxton, John Smith, Andrew (Oxford E)
Meale, Alan Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)
Michie, Bill (Sheffield Heeley) Smyth, The Reverend Martin
Michie, Mrs Ray (Argyll & Bute) Snape, Peter
Milburn, Alan Spearing, Nigel
Miller, Andrew Spellar, John
Molyneaux, Rt Hon James Squire, Rachel (Dunfermline W)
Morgan, Rhodri Steel, Rt Hon Sir David
Morris, Rt Hon Alfred (Wy'nshawe) Steinberg, Gerry
Morris, Estelle (B'ham Yardley) Stevenson, George
Mowlam, Marjorie Taylor, Mrs Ann (Dewsbury)
Mudie, George Taylor, Matthew (Truro)
Mullin, Chris Timmis, Stephen
Murphy, Paul Tipping, Paddy
O'Brien, Mike (N W'kshire) Touhig, Don
O'Brien, William (Normanton) Turner, Dennis
Olner, Bill Tyler, Paul
O'Neill, Martin Walker, Rt Hon Sir Harold
Orme, Rt Hon Stanley Wallace, James
Parry, Robert Walley, Joan
Pearson, Ian Wardell, Gareth (Gower)
Pickthall, Colin Watson, Mike
Pike, Peter L Welsh, Andrew
Pope, Greg Williams, Rt Hon Alan (Sw'n W)
Powell, Ray (Ogmore) Williams, Alan W (Carmarthen)
Prentice, Bridget (Lew'm E) Wilson, Brian
Prentice, Gordon (Pendle) Winnick, David
Prescott, Rt Hon John Wise, Audrey
Primarolo, Dawn Worthington, Tony
Purchase, Ken Wray, Jimmy
Quin, Ms Joyce Wright, Dr Tony
Radice, Giles Young, David (Bolton SE)
Randall, Stuart
Raynsford, Nick Tellers for the Ayes:
Reid, Dr John Mr. Jon Owen Jones and Mr. Eric Clarke.
Rendel, David
Ainsworth, Peter (East Surrey) Beresford, Sir Paul
Aitken, Rt Hon Jonathan Biffen, Rt Hon John
Alexander, Richard Bonsor, Sir Nicholas
Alison, Rt Hon Michael (Selby) Booth, Hartley
Allason, Rupert (Torbay) Bottomley, Peter (Eltham)
Amess, David Bottomley, Rt Hon Virginia
Ancram, Michael Bowden, Sir Andrew
Arbuthnot, James Bowis, John
Arnold, Jacques (Gravesham) Boyson, Rt Hon Sir Rhodes
Arnold, Sir Thomas (Hazel Grv) Brandreth, Gyles
Ashby, David Brazier, Julian
Atkins, Rt Hon Robert Bright, Sir Graham
Atkinson, David (Bour'mouth E) Brown, M (Brigg & Cl'thorpes)
Atkinson, Peter (Hexham) Browning, Mrs Angela
Baker, Nicholas (North Dorset) Bruce, Ian (Dorset)
Baldry, Tony Budgen, Nicholas
Banks, Matthew (Southport) Burns, Simon
Bates, Michael Burt, Alistair
Batiste, Spencer Butcher, John
Bellingham, Henry Butler, Peter
Bendall, Vivian Butterfill, John
Carlisle, John (Luton North) Hawksley, Warren
Carlisle, Sir Kenneth (Lincoln) Hayes, Jerry
Carrington, Matthew Heald, Oliver
Carttiss, Michael Heath, Rt Hon Sir Edward
Cash, William Heathcoat-Amory, David
Channon, Rt Hon Paul Hendry, Charles
Churchill, Mr Heseltine, Rt Hon Michael
Clappison, James Hicks, Robert
Clark, Dr Michael (Rochford) Higgins, Rt Hon Sir Terence
Clarke, Rt Hon Kenneth (Ru'clif) Hogg, Rt Hon Douglas (G'tham)
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey Horam, John
Coe, Sebastian Hordern, Rt Hon Sir Peter
Colvin Michael Howard, Rt Hon Michael
Conway, Derek Howarth, Alan (Strat'rd-on-A)
Coombs, Anthony (Wyre For'st) Howell, Sir Ralph (N Norfolk)
Cope, Rt Hon Sir John Hughes, Robert G (Harrow W)
Cormack, Sir Patrick Hunt, Sir John (Ravensbourne)
Couchman, James Hunter, Andrew
Cran, James Jack, Michael
Currie, Mrs Edwina (S D'by'ire) Jackson, Robert (Wantage)
Curry, David (Skipton & Ripon) Jenkin, Bernard
Davies, Quentin (Stamford) Jessel, Toby
Davis, David (Boothferry) Johnson Smith, Sir Geoffrey
Day, Stephen Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)
Deva, Nirj Joseph Jones, Robert B (W Hertfdshr)
Devlin, Tim Kellett-Bowman, Dame Elaine
Dicks, Terry Key, Robert
Dorrell, Rt Hon Stephen King, Rt Hon Tom
Douglas-Hamilton, Lord James Kirkhope, Timothy
Dover, Den Knapman, Roger
Duncan, Alan Knight, Mrs Angela (Erewash)
Duncan-Smith, Iain Knight, Greg (Derby N)
Dunn, Bob Knight, Dame Jill (Bir'm E'st'n)
Durant, Sir Anthony Knox, Sir David
Dykes, Hugh Kynoch, George (Kincardine)
Eggar, Rt Hon Tim Lait, Mrs Jacqui
Elletson, Harold Lang, Rt Hon Ian
Evans, David (Welwyn Hatfield) Lawrence, Sir Ivan
Evans, Jonathan (Brecon) Legg, Barry
Evans, Nigel (Ribbte Valley) Leigh, Edward
Evans, Roger (Monmouth) Lennox-Boyd, Sir Mark
Evennett, David Lidington, David
Faber, David Lightbown, David
Fabricant, Michael Lilley, Rt Hon Peter
Fenner, Dame Peggy Lloyd, Rt Hon Sir Peter (Fareham)
Field, Barry (Isle of Wight) Lord, Michael
Fishburn, Dudley Luff, Peter
Forman, Nigel Lyell, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas
Forsyth, Rt Hon Michael (Stirling) MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Forth, Eric MacKay, Andrew
Fowler, Rt Hon Sir Norman Maclean, Rt Hon David
Fox, Sir Marcus (Shipley) McLoughlin, Patrick
Freeman, Rt Hon Roger McNair-Wilson, Sir Patrick
French, Douglas Madel, Sir David
Gale, Roger Maitland, Lady Olga
Gallie, Phil Major, Rt Hon John
Gardiner, Sir George Malone, Gerald
Garel-Jones, Rt Hon Tristan Mans, Keith
Garnier, Edward Marland, Paul
Gillan, Cheryl Marlow, Tony
Goodson-Wickes, Dr Charles Marshall, John (Hendon S)
Gorst, Sir John Martin, David (Portsmouth S)
Grant, Sir A (SW Cambs) Mayhew, Rt Hon Sir Patrick
Greenway, Harry (Ealing N) Merchant, Piers
Greenway, John (Ryedale) Mills, Iain
Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth, N) Mitchell, Andrew (Gedling)
Gummer, Rt Hon John Selwyn Mitchell, Sir David (NW Hants)
Hague, William Moate, Sir Roger
Hamilton, Rt Hon Sir Archibald Monro, Sir Hector
Hamilton, Neil (Tatton) Montgomery, Sir Fergus
Hampson, Dr Keith Moss, Malcolm
Hanley, Rt Hon Jeremy Nelson, Anthony
Hannam, Sir John Neubert, Sir Michael
Hargreaves, Andrew Newton, Rt Hon Tony
Haselhurst, Sir Alan Nicholls, Patrick
Hawkins, Nick Nicholson, David (Taunton)
Nicholson, Emma (Devon West) Stephen, Michael
Norris, Steve Stern, Michael
Onslow, Rt Hon Sir Cranley Stewart, Allan
Oppenheim, Phillip Streeter, Gary
Ottaway, Richard Sumberg, David
Page, Richard Sweeney, Walter
Paice, James Sykes, John
Patnick, Sir Irvine Tapsell, Sir Peter
Patten, Rt Hon John Taylor, Ian (Esher)
Pattie, Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey Taylor, John M (Solihull)
Pawsey, James Taylor, Sir Teddy (Southend, E)
Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth Thomason, Roy
Pickles, Eric Thompson, Sir Donald (C'er V)
Porter, Barry (Wirral S) Thompson, Patrick (Norwich N)
Porter, David (Waveney) Thornton, Sir Malcolm
Portillo, Rt Hon Michael Thurnham, Peter
Powell, William (Corby) Townend, John (Bridlington)
Rathbone, Tim Townsend, Cyril D (Bexl'yh'th)
Redwood, Rt Hon John Tracey, Richard
Renton, Rt Hon Tim Tredinnick, David
Richards, Rod Trend, Michael
Riddick, Graham Trotter, Neville
Rifkind, Rt Hon Malcolm Twinn, Dr Ian
Robathan, Andrew Vaughan, Sir Gerard
Roberts, Rt Hon Sir Wyn Viggers, Peter
Robertson, Raymond (Ab'd'n S) Waldegrave, Rt Hon William
Robinson, Mark (Somerton) Walker, Bill (N Tayside)
Roe, Mrs Marion (Broxbourne) Waller, Gary
Rowe, Andrew (Mid Kent) Ward, John
Rumbold, Rt Hon Dame Angela Wardle, Charles (Bexhill)
Ryder, Rt Hon Richard Waterson, Nigel
Sackville, Tom Watts, John
Sainsbury, Rt Hon Sir Timothy Wells, Bowen
Scott, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas Wheeler, Rt Hon Sir John
Shaw, David (Dover) Whitney, Ray
Shaw, Sir Giles (Pudsey) Whittingdale, John
Shephard, Rt Hon Gillian Widdecombe, Ann
Shepherd, Colin (Hereford) Wiggin, Sir Jerry
Shepherd, Richard (Aldridge) Wilkinson, John
Shersby, Sir Michael Willetts, David
Sims, Roger Wilshire, David
Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield) Winterton, Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Soames, Nicholas Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesfield)
Spencer, Sir Derek Wolfson, Mark
Spicer, Sir James (W Dorset) Wood, Timothy
Spicer, Michael (S Worcs) Yeo, Tim
Spink, Dr Robert Young, Rt Hon Sir George
Spring, Richard
Sproat, Iain Tellers for the Noes:
Squire, Robin (Hornchurch) Mr. Sydney Chapman and Dr. Liam Fox.
Steen, Anthony

Question accordingly negatived.

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