Where a spouse’s employer-sponsored pension is to be split, the non-member spouse has several options for receiving payment. Your spouse will have to choose between transferring the funds to their personal registered retirement savings plan (RRSP) or Locked-In Retirement Account (LIRA), or leaving the money in your pension fund until they retire, at which point, they will receive monthly payments. Where pension funds are locked-in, the non-member spouse can only transfer their share into their LIRA or similar locked-in RRSP which cannot be accessed until their retirement.
In cases where the pension-holding spouse wants to buy out their spouse’s interest in the matrimonial home, the pension-holding spouse may satisfy payment by way of lump-sum transfer from their pension, provided such is permitted under their pension plan. An equalization payment owed may also be satisfied in much the same way. These scenarios serve as limited examples in which a non-member spouse may be paid in cash from your pension funds.