Pension Sharing

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

You can share your Canada Pension Plan (CPP) retirement pension with your legal spouse or common-law partner. To do so, you must be receiving your pension, or be eligible to receive it, and be living with your legal spouse or common-law partner.

Sharing your pension may result in tax savings.

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Do you qualify

To qualify for pension sharing of retirement pension(s), you must meet the following conditions:

Common-law partner

According to the CPP legislation, a common-law partner is a person of either sex who has lived with you in a conjugal relationship for at least 1 year.

To prove that you are in a common-law relationship, or that you and your spouse lived in a common-law relationship prior to your marriage, you will need to fill out 1 of the following forms:

Spouses or common-law partners who are separated

Spouses or common-law partners cannot apply for pension sharing if they are voluntarily separated at the time of application.

If spouses or common-law partners separate after the pension sharing is approved, the following applies:

How much could you receive

There are 2 ways to share a pension:

The portion of your pension that can be shared is based on the number of months you and your spouse or common-law partner lived together during your joint contributory period. This period is the time when either one of you could have contributed to the CPP and/or QPP. Your Statement of Contributions has all the details about your contributions.


When to apply

Pension sharing starts as soon as we approve your application. A pension-sharing arrangement cannot be backdated.

Who should complete the application

If you and your spouse or common-law partner meet the eligibility requirements and would like to share your CPP retirement pensions, either you or your legal spouse or common-law partner can apply.


If you are applying for or are already receiving a CPP retirement pension, you can apply for pension sharing.

Apply online

To apply online:

Apply using a paper application

To apply using a paper application:

After you apply

Once we receive your application and any supporting documents, we will contact you if we need more information. We will send you a letter once we have completed our review to let you know if you are eligible.

When pension sharing stops

Pension sharing stops in whichever month occurs first:

To cancel pension sharing

To cancel a pension sharing arrangement:

What happens to my CPP retirement pension when pension sharing ends

We adjust your pension to the amount you were to receive before the pension-sharing arrangement.

If you contributed less to the CPP than your spouse or common-law partner or if you never worked, the amount of your retirement pension could decrease.

If you contributed more to the CPP than your spouse or common-law partner, your retirement pension amount could increase.

Review your application status

If you have not heard from us by the time you expect your first payment and you would like to find out the status of your application, you can contact Canada Pension Plan.

If you disagree with a decision

You may request a reconsideration of any decision that affects your eligibility or the amount of your Canada Pension Plan benefit.

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