Parties are divorcing. Wife works in the private sector and has Social Security withheld from her pay. Husband is an officer with the city police department. He contributes to the police pension fund. He does not have Social Security tax withheld from his pay.
Husband can retire at age 50 with full pension benefits. A wife expects full Social Security benefits at age 67.
Husband wanted to decrease the amount of his pension that wife could share in. By the value of the hypothetical Social Security benefits that he is not entitled to receive. Because he did not participate in social security. But the wife did. He believes he should be able to receive a benefit.
It is improper for a circuit court to consider Social Security benefits in equalizing a property distribution in a divorce case. Social Security benefits may not be divided directly. They may not be used as a basis for offset during dissolution proceedings.
Social Security benefits are not marital property subject to division by the court. Congress intended to keep Social Security benefits out of divorce cases.
In re Marriage of Mueller, 2015 IL 117876.
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