The Ontario Court of Appeal in Van Delst v Hronowsky, 2020 ONCA 329 decided pension administrators must value non-Ontario pensions in the same manner as an Ontario pension under the Pension Benefits Act, RSO 1990, c P.8 (the “PBA”) unless a different method is necessary in the circumstances.
The court set out the following process for determining the value of a non-Ontario pension in Ontario:
- The parties request a pension administrator to generate a value based on Ontario law;
- The parties may seek directions from the court if:
- The pension administrator not regulated by provincial legislation refuses to calculate the value under Ontario law; or
- Issues arise from necessary modifications in applying the provincial scheme to the non-Ontario pension;
- In the event of litigation, the court prefers a single jointly appointed expert to provide expert evidence on the pension, rather than competing valuators.
The parties were married in October 1995 and separated in September 2016. Both spouses worked for entities governed by the federal Public Service Superannuation Act, RSC 1985, c P-36 (the “PSSA”). The parties disputed the net family property (“NFP”) calculation of their pensions.
Both parties provided expert reports valuing their pension plans. These competing valuations arose since there is no equivalent to the PBA for valuating federally regulated pensions.