48 per cent of women have “no idea” what happens to pension during divorce


Women are missing out on thousands of pounds in retirement because pension savings are rarely discussed in divorce proceedings, according to a new study.

Scottish Widows, which published the report, found that seven in 10 couples fail to discuss retirement funds in divorce – leaving thousands of women in pension poverty.

This is despite the fact that more than half of married couples (56 per cent) would fight for a share of jointly owned property, while a third (36 per cent) would split their combined savings.

Not discussing retirement funds in divorce can adversely affect women. That’s because, on average, just 52 per cent of women save enough for a comfortable retirement, compared to 59 per cent of men.

After divorce, this figure drops to 49 per cent. Likewise, 40 per cent of divorced women say their retirement prospects worsened as a result of ending a marriage, compared to 19 per cent of men.

This is attributed to the gender pay gap, maternity leave, and career breaks, according to Scottish Widows.

The pensions provider said the figures suggest that some £5 billion in pensions savings is going amiss each year.

The survey also found:

  • 25 per cent of women are unable to save anything into a pension after divorce
  • 16 per cent of women loss access to any kind of pension pot after divorce
  • 10 per cent of divorced women rely on state pension in retirement
  • 48 per cent of women have “no idea” what happens to their pension pot during a divorce
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