Family LawPension and Provident Funds

Life Partners, Pensions Funds and Consequences

In Volks v Robinson, the Constitutional Court, in 2005, found, that the consequences of marriage should not be imposed on persons or the estates of persons who were not prevented from marrying by law.

In August 2009, the Pension Fund Adjudicator found in the matter of the Eskom Pension Fund and Smith, that it was unfair to not extend a spouse’s pension benefits to permanent life partners.

To further compound the situation, the Domestic Partnership Bill published in 2008, seeks to inter alia create property claims and a duty of support for unmarried parties.

In effect, and notwithstanding the pronouncements of the Constitutional Court persons who co-habit may find themselves to be the unintended victims of pension, property and maintenance claims.

Whilst the Pension Fund Adjudicator and the legislature may be seeking to create some equity for domestic and life partners, parties should exercise a degree of caution in their relationship, especially those of a frivolous nature.

Ian Mc Laren

Ian Mc Laren

Ian McLaren BA LLB (WITS) General Educated St Johns College, Houghton. BA LLB University of the Witwatersrand 1984 Founded McLarens Attorneys September 1986. Right of Appearance High Court, October 1996.ExpertiseLitigation, Labour Law, Commercial Law, Family Law, Pension and Provident Funds, Customs and Excise, Wills, Deceased Estates, Trusts, Commercial Agreements, Reviewing and Drafting Government Legislation, Information Technology.Committees/ TrustsLaw Society of South Africa Information Technology Committee. Trustee Verney College Educational TrustOtherTransvaal Provincial colours for Practical Shooting. Third degree Black Belt JKS Karate. Photographer and motor cyclist Lectured for Continuing Legal Education on Information Technology issues.