– from Benjamin Y. in Hartford, WI

Question Details:

I am in the process of getting a divorce. My pension is on the table for property division. My wife is asking that she be able to choose a payout option after my retirement. Shouldn't I be the one who chooses the payout since it is my pension?

Family Law Attorney Response:

To be honest, the court has full discretion in deciding a property division payout option or in appointing a party to choose.

That could be you, or your wife. It is also dependent on the division of the pension, such as whether it is 50/50. To illustrate, the case of Lindsey v. Lindsey 140 Wis. 2d 684, 412 N.W.2d 132 (Ct. App. 1987) saw a similar situation. In this case, the trial court felt it was in error by appointing the wife the decider of the payout option. The wife appealed, and the court of appeals reversed. This is just an example as to how a case like this could play out, though.

I suggest contacting an attorney and providing full details of your case.

Trisha Festerling, J.D.

Family Law Attorney

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