Changing Your Marital Status

What you need to know

New Spousal Relationship After Retirement:

  • If you have no eligible survivors* and you begin a new spousal relationship after your pension has begun, your new spouse is not automatically entitled to a 60% survivor pension.
  • If you wish to provide your new spouse with a lifetime survivor pension, your pension will be permanently reduced.
  • You may start the process by completing the Application for Post-Retirement Spouse Survivor Pension Application.
    • If you are married, you must apply within 90 days of your date of marriage, or
    • If you are in a common law relationship, you must apply within 90 days of the third year anniversary of the date your common-law relationship began, and
    • If you have a dependent child that may be eligible for survivor benefits, you must apply within 90 days of the date you no longer have an eligible child.
    • If you miss the 90 day window, you may still apply, but your application must include a Certificate of Health signed by your physician or nurse practitioner certifying that you are in good health.
  • You may choose to provide your new spouse with a survivor pension equal to 50%, 55%, 60%, 65%, 70%, or 75% of your lifetime pension.  The cost of the survivor pension will vary depending on the option you choose. 
  • OPTrust will send you a quote outlining the cost for each option and an election form. 
  • Once you have returned the completed election form, your pension will be reduced to pay for the survivor pension for your new spouse. 
  • The reduction to your pension will remain in effect for your lifetime, even if your new spouse dies before you do.
  • If you qualify for post-retirement insured benefits and your pension has been reduced to provide a survivor pension for your new spouse, your new spouse will qualify to receive post-retirement insured benefits coverage after you die.

*eligible survivors include an eligible spouse at retirement or eligible children.  


Breakdown of your spousal relationship:

If your spousal relationship has ended, please read our factsheet to learn more about how this may impact your pension.

How to update your status

When starting a new spousal relationship



In a spousal relationship breakdown:

  • review your beneficiary information and update it as necessary
  • send OPTrust a completed Statement of Marital Status form

When to contact us

  • any life changes – marriage, new common-law spouse, separation, divorce, death, new beneficiaries
  • changes to contact information – address, phone number, e-mail address

Forms you may need to complete

New Spouse After Retirement

Spousal Relationship Breakdown

STEP 1: The Application Process

Member/member's former spouse complete Application for Family Law Value (Family Law Form FL-1) form

STEP 2: Determining the Value

Within 60 days OPTrust determines value and sends both parties a copy of Statement of Family Law Value.

STEP 3: Decision Re: Division of Pension

Steps 4 to 5 below apply if the pension is divided. If no division, please provide a certified copy of your court order or separation agreement stating the decision made regarding the division of the pension.

STEP 4: Applying to Divide Your Pension

  • Spouse’s Application for Transfer of a Lump Sum (Family Law Form FL-5) form or
    • This form is to be used if your spousal relationship ended before you retired, and you received a Statement of Family Law Value (FL-4A or FL-4D) from OPTrust.
  • Spouse's Application to Divide a Retired Member's Pension (Family Law Form FL-6) form
    • This form is to be used if your spousal relationship ended after you retired, and you received a Statement of Family Law Value (FL-4E) from OPTrust.
  • Please provide certified copy of your court order or separation agreement made on or after January 1, 2012 which provides for the division of the Family Law Value. The final settlement document must include the following information:
    • Name of the pension plan and plan administrator
    • Name of the plan member and their former spouse
    • Specify the amount or percentage of the Family Law Value that must be transferred or divided by the plan administrator
    • Family Law Valuation Date (this date should match with the Statement of Family Law Value)
    • Start date of the spousal relationship is not required to be in the document, but if it is it must match the Statement of Family Law Value
    • Pursuant to the Ontario Family Law Act

STEP 5: Spousal Joint and Survivor Pension Waiver and Updating Your Beneficiaries