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VOL. 79 PART 2 MARCH 2021
Law Act and the Division of Pensions Regulation. The committee’s hard
work ultimately yielded 25 tentative recommendations for reform.
These tentative recommendations were the subject of public comment in
the spring of 2020, when BCLI published the committee’s “Consultation
Paper on Pension Division: A Review of Part 6 of the Family Law Act.” For
four months, the committee collected the public’s views on its tentative recommendations
for reform. The committee was pleased with the detailed,
thoughtful comments it received through its public consultation.
In the fall of 2020, the committee considered the results of its public consultation
and refined its proposals to generate the final recommendations
that are published in its final report. The committee also created draft legislation
and regulations for that report to illustrate how its recommendations
could be implemented by specific changes to Part 6 and the regulation.
Pension division is a branch of the larger area of family law that governs
how separating spouses divide family property between themselves. The
bulk of that area of the law is governed by Part 5 of the Family Law Act. Pensions
are one type of family property, but they are subject to special rules
(found in Part 6 of the Act) because pensions have proved to be challenging
to divide in practice.
In the committee’s view, Part 6 is generally working well, but it could
benefit from some fine-tuning. The committee’s report promotes evolutionary
change, improving Part 6 in light of developments that have occurred
since it came into force in 2013.
Among the report’s highlights are recommendations designed to:
• clarify the application of transitional rules to pension division
• make locked-in retirement accounts and life income funds divisible
under Part 6;
• change the rules for privately purchased annuities, making them
divisible under Part 6 only when the annuity is in pay;
• confirm that the personal representative of a deceased spouse has
the authority to have the spouse’s estate designated as a limited
member of a pension plan; and
• make various improvements to the prescribed forms.
REPORT ON MODERNIZING THE CHILD, FAMILY AND COMMUNITY SERVICE
In its Report on Modernizing the Child, Family and Community Service Act,
BCLI takes a focused look at the statute that is at the centre of British
Columbia’s child protection system. The report recommends a series of