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Is my pension considered legal property during a divorce?

Pension Family Law

Is my pension considered legal property during a divorce?

To start, PENSIONS ARE CONSIDERED PROPERTY under the Ontario Family Law Act and is valued in accordance with the Pension Benefits Act.

Family Law in Ontario provides that each spouse is automatically entitled to a share of the spouse’s pension, as it is considered part of the family assets that are to be equalized upon separation or divorce.

How does a pension get split in a divorce?

There are detailed rules on how that post-split division is calculated. This is where it gets a little complicated.

Assuming one of the spouses is a member of an Ontario pension plan, those rules apply mainly to married spouses who separated on or after January 1, 2012, or who separated prior to that date but had not yet resolved their property issues by then.

These rules can also apply to unmarried spouses, but only by agreement.


1) The “Preliminary Value” of a pension is the total value that the pension-holder earned while he or she was a member of a pension plan, up until the marital separation date.

2) The “Family Law Value” (sometimes called the “Imputed Value”) is that pro-rated portion of the Preliminary Value that was earned during the period of the pension-holder’s marriage to the other spouse (and if the spouses agree, any period of cohabitation can also be included in this amount).

Once the Family Law Value has been calculated, it forms part of the calculation for determining the pension-holding spouse’s Net Family Property for equalization purposes

Different Approaches

The correct approach to valuing a pension will differ according to the type of pension.

Defined Contribution Pension – The Preliminary Value is calculated by taking the value at date of marriage and deducting it from the value at the date of separation.

Defined Benefit Pension – If the pension-holding spouse is not eligible for an unreduced pension on the separation date – the Preliminary Value of his or her pension is calculated through a complicated formula that incorporates various retirement dates.  There is a different formula applied if the pension-holding spouse is already eligible for an unreduced pension on the separation date.

Note! that the pension division is actually optional, but only in that the pension-holding spouse can buy out his or her spouse’s interest in it, using other assets.


Toronto sisters accused in Nigerian sexual extortion scandal try to clear their name



Jyoti and Kiran Matharoo sisters

Jyoti (right) and Kiran Matharoo (left), in a photo posted to Instagram in 2015.

They were nicknamed the “Canadian Kardashians” and garnered a large following on Instagram. Jyoti Matharoo currently has 49k followers and has posted several documents on their blog www.Matropolitan.com.

In an Instagram post Jyoti Matharoo claims there are 36 pages but they have posted only the ones pertaining to them. She stated the documents not posted include 8 pages of statements from Babatunde Oyebode, 3 pages of statements from Kiran Matharoo.


They were accused of attempting to extort a Nigerian Billionaire Femi Otedola. They were quickly arrested and briefly jailed. The sisters allegedly tried to blackmail Femi by claiming they had evidence of him cheating on his wife and they would post that evidence to a sex-scandal website NaijaGistLive.

On or about December 29, 2016 the sisters Jyoti and Kiran Matharoo posted a video on youtube apologizing and taking responsibility for a website called Naijagistlive. In the video they read a prepared statement off a cellphone.

In the video they stated that the money went to “Babatunde Oyebode of Huzzle Inc.” According to the Toronto Star, they received messages from a Twitter account under the name Babatunde Oyebode listed as a  CEO of Huzzle Inc and he stated to them that he had been charged and arrested by the Nigerian Police. It is perplexing why the sisters would not post Oyebode’s 8 page statement or the Kiran’s 3 page statement. Some online posters have inferred that they only posted what was beneficial to them to corroborate their story.

Return to Canada

The editor of an online newspaper that first broke the story of the charges, Dumebi Ifeanyi believes that the Canadian government may have intervened and helped Jyoti and Kiran Matharoo flee Nigeria.

Ifeanyi states “…the Canadian High Commission gave a document to the girls which would aid them to travel without their passports.”

A CityNews Investigation found they resurfaced online and appear to be back in Toronto.

A lawyer who helped the sisters told CTV News that they were issued replacement emergency passports by the Canadian Embassy.

Change of Story

In an exclusive with CTV news the Matharoo sisters changed their story even though in the apology video they said they would, “We promise not to say anything of the contrary to what we are saying now. We freely volunteer to make this video, and not under duress [be]cause we are aware of the damages[sic] done to people.”

Now they say they made the apology video to get their passports back but they were never returned. They told CTV News they made the apology video out of fear for their lives.

The Matharoo sisters left Nigeria on January 1 and have already missed several Court dates. The next date is scheduled for May 22. Canada and Nigeria do not have an extradition treaty.

Who should we believe?

23 year old beats Murder charge, shot and killed minutes later

Alleged Murderer

A man who beat his murder case when prosecutors failed to give him a speedy trial was killed minutes after leaving Cook County Jail on Monday night, according to authorities.

Kamari Belmont, 23, was being held on murder and robbery charges after he allegedly shot a man during a robbery and robbed another man a few hours later in 2015.  The man he shot died weeks later.

Cook County prosecutors dropped the murder charges at the end of January after allowing too much time to elapse under the state’s speedy trial statute, according to court records and Belmont’s attorney.  The robbery charges remained and Belmont was ordered held on a $100,000 bond.

At 5:30 p.m. Monday, a friend of Belmont posted the required $10,000 on the bond and Belmont was released at 11:12 p.m., according to jail officials.

Belmont was a few block from the jail when a white SUV pulled up to his car on California Avenue and someone inside started shooting, police said. Belmont was hit several times.

The SUV ran a red light as it sped off and crashed into a car near Interstate 55, police said.  Those inside ran away.  Belmont collapsed in the street and died at the scene.

“Oh my God, I can’t believe it,” said Belmont’s attorney, Michael Johnson, who said he has known Belmont’s family for more than two decades. He said he’d seen Belmont at the jail recently as the family put together the bail money.

“I told him, once he gets out he’s got to get out of the neighborhood,” Johnson said. “Unfortunately this isn’t the first time I’ve seen this.”

But Johnson said he didn’t believe Belmont’s killing was street justice. The armed robbery and murder weren’t gang-related, Johnson said, and he didn’t think it possible that word spread that quickly of Belmont’s release from jail.

The shooting and robberies occurred on May 1, 2015.  The person who was shot, Sorrell Marshall, 40, died three weeks later.

Belmont and another man, Terrance Hogan, 23, were arrested the night of the shooting and initially charged with attempted murder and armed robbery. The charges were not upgraded to murder until nearly a year later, in April 2016, according to a timeline compiled by jail officials.

It wasn’t clear why prosecutors waited so long to file murder charges. However,  Marshall’s death was not immediately ruled a homicide by the Cook County medical examiner’s office, which initially marked the case as pending further investigation.

But the clock under the speedy trial statute had started ticking with the attempted murder charges. The murder charges did not reset the clock because they were based on the same set of facts, according to a three-page motion from attorneys for Hogan and Belmont.

Prosecutors had no choice but to drop the charges, Belmont’s attorney said.

A representative from Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

Marshall was shot after he dropped off his girlfriend near her apartment at 37th and Vincennes and parked when Belmont and Hogan tried to rob him, according to authorities.  A struggle ensued, and Marshall was shot in the leg and the groin.

Belmont was arrested in Canaryville that night after he and Hogan held up a man in the South Loop, authorities said. A woman with the victim fled and flagged down a police car that tracked the phone to Canaryville.

Hogan was accidentally shot by police during the arrest, according to the police union at the time. He was arrested after he showed up at Mercy Hospital and Medical Center seeking treatment.

Source: Chicago Tribune

NBA Star Derek Fisher to pay $1.5 Million a year in support to his ex-wife



Ex-NBA star Derek Fisher will pay $1.3 million a year in spousal support and $15,000.00 a month in child support to his former spouse.

According to reports, Derek Fisher has agreed to pay his ex-wife $109,000 in spousal support, along with $15,000 per month in child support for their 9-year old twin boys.

They will also destroy the frozen embryos as part of their divorce settlement.

How is spousal support calculated?

Among other factors the Courts look at:

  • how much money each person could reasonably earn every month
  • what the reasonable expenses are going to be for each of them, and
  • whether an alimony award from one to the other would make it possible for each to go forward with a lifestyle somewhat close to what the couple had before they split—known in divorce law as “the standard of living established during the marriage.”


Saudi Man Divorces Brides Minutes After Wedding



A Saudi bride was divorced shortly after the marriage ceremony when she ignored her groom and kept chatting with her friends on her mobile.

“Following the marriage ceremony, the groom took his bride to the hotel where they had booked a room,” a relative said. “However, as soon as the bride was in the room, she kept using her mobile. Her groom tried to get closer with her and become more intimate, but he was shocked when she ignored him, not responding to his words and action. When he asked her about the reasons, she answered she was busy communicating with her friends who were congratulating her on her marriage on the mobile. The groom asked her to delay the messages, but she refused and became angry. When he asked her if her friends were more important than he was, the bride answered that they were,” the relative said, quoted by Saudi daily Al Watan on Tuesday.

As the argument between them became unexpectedly heated, the groom told his bride he was divorcing her and left the hotel.

The relative said that a divorce case was filed and the court referred it to the reconciliation committee to assess if the newly-weds could be reconciled, the relative added.

However, the groom, too hurt in his pride to forgive, refused to withdraw the case and insisted on the divorce.

A Saudi legal expert warned against the alarmingly growing figures of divorce among newly-weds, saying that they reached around 50 per cent.

“Misunderstandings, differences in views and the easy approach to marriage without a deep appreciation of the responsibilities are among the major causes for divorce among young people,” Ahmad Al Maabi told the daily. “Marriages are bound to fail when there are no robust foundations or trust.”

Mississauga gives Uber one week to shut down

Mississauga council is going to wait one week for Uber to shut down or else it will scrap a proposed pilot program.

Uber and other ride-sharing companies have until this coming Wednesday to shut down operations in Mississauga or else the city will pull the plug on a proposed pilot program to allow such businesses to compete with traditional taxis.

“They responded, which I felt was a sign of progress and a show of good will,” said Mayor Bonnie Crombie, after Wednesday’s council meeting, referring to a letter from Uber to the city indicating the company wishes to cooperate.

Last week council banned all ride-sharing companies from operating unless they follow the same rules as traditional taxis, but left the door open with the possibility of new rules to be worked out under the pilot program.

Councillor Carolyn Parrish, who does not want any transportation businesses picking up passengers in the city unless they follow the exact same rules as taxis, said the pilot should be killed.

“I don’t like Uber, I don’t want them.” Parrish said that a motion passed last week stated clearly that all ride-sharing companies were directed to cease operation with the passage of the council resolution, before a pilot were to proceed. Since Uber has failed to do so, and continues to operate, she said Wednesday that plans for the pilot should be scrapped.

Uber Canada spokesperson Susie Heath did not specifically say Wednesday whether the company will pull out of Mississauga by next week. She told the Star, however, that the company already has 100,000 daily riders and 5,000 drivers in Mississauga: “That’s why we are committed to working with Mississauga City Council and staff and have requested an earlier date for recommendations on the framework for a pilot program.”

Heath went on to note that councils in Toronto, Edmonton and Ottawa had already passed “smart regulations that embrace ridesharing.”

Crombie said that the timing laid out in the motion was “nebulous” and Uber needed some time before it could consider shutting down, in order to have a pilot shaped by September.

In the letter to the city, Uber has asked for the September date, when the pilot details would be drafted, to be moved up, but was no more specific about timing.

Parrish indicated she is not happy with the letter. “They said they want to conduct a pilot under the same rules Toronto passed for them.” Parrish said she and Crombie also indicated they would dramatically limit the number of ride-sharing drivers under a pilot, possibly to 50 vehicles.




Poultry Farm Workers Forced To Wear Diapers

A recent report by Oxfam is shining a light on the abhorrent conditions inside the slaughterhouses of some of the nation’s largest chicken producers. And this time, we’re not just talking about what happens to the animals.

Research and interviews conducted with factory workers at chicken giants Tyson, Perdue, andPilgrim’s Pride revealed a workplace culture in which bathroom breaks were reportedly so fervently discouraged that workers began to wear diapers so that they could keep working as they soiled themselves, afraid of losing their jobs if they asked to use the bathroom too many times.

Sadly, this report confirms that the sickening denial of even the most basic needs of individuals (regardless of their species) is business as usual in the poultry industry.

Source: PETA

How long does it take to get a divorce?

Divorce Application

In Ontario, a divorce can take 30 days to over a year depending on your situation.

The quickest way to obtain a divorce is to file a Joint Application in which both parties agree to all the issues. You can then file your Affidavit of Divorce along with your marriage certificate.

There are three heads under which individuals can seek divorce:

  1. Parties have been separated for 12 months;
  2. Adultery;
  3. Cruelty.

Depending on how quickly your documents are prepared and filed and the number of cases being handled by the Court in your area it can take 30 days to over a year. In most cases we have seen a Divorce Order be granted within 4-6 months of filing all the outstanding documents.

What is the difference between a simple divorce and a joint divorce?


A divorce application may be started by filing an application for divorce with their spouse as a respondent or a joint application.

A simple divorce can be the most inexpensive avenue to obtain a divorce Order. You can get a divorce by proving that your marriage is over. You can prove this by showing that you have been separated for a year, or that your husband or wife has had a sexual relationship with another person, or that your husband or wife has been physically or mentally cruel to you. In this application you will name your spouse as the respondent. If your spouse does not respond to the application within the prescribed time, they lose the opportunity to respond at all unless they bring a motion asking for the Courts permission to do the same. If your spouse fails to respond, the divorce effectively becomes uncontested. Which means you may file your Affidavit for Divorce and seek a divorce Order.

Alternatively you and your spouse can agree to file a joint divorce in which you agree to all the issues (which can be through a separation agreement) and advise the Court of your intention to divorce. This can be the quickest method of divorce. You may file the Affidavit for Divorce with the application.

Family Law – Which Court do I apply to?


In Ontario, family law matters are dealt with in separate courts. Each avenue has its benefits and drawbacks.

You must apply to the Superior Court of Justice if you want to do the following:

  1. Apply for a simple divorce;
  2. Ask for custody, access or support as part of the divorce;
  3. Equalization and division of family property.

You can apply to the Ontario Court of Justice if you want to do the following:

  1. Spousal support;
  2. Custody or access to children.

This Court also hears adoption and child protections matters.

You and your spouse can also resolve matters and issues between each other through private settlement, negotiation, collaborative family law, mediation or arbitration instead of going to Court.

Here at Law Booth we believe in the collaborative approach to family law matters. If you want a Separation Agreement drafted, feel free to call us.