2021 Pennsylvania Consolidated & Unconsolidated Statutes
Chapter 61 - Estates
Section 6111.2 - Effect of divorce or pending divorce on designation of beneficiaries

§ 6111.2. Effect of divorce or pending divorce on designation of beneficiaries.

(a) Applicability.--This section is applicable if an individual:

(1) is domiciled in this Commonwealth;

(2) designates the individual's spouse as beneficiary of the individual's life insurance policy, annuity contract, pension or profit-sharing plan or other contractual arrangement providing for payments to the spouse; and

(3) either:

(i) at the time of the individual's death is divorced from the spouse; or

(ii) dies during the course of divorce proceedings, no decree of divorce has been entered pursuant to 23 Pa.C.S. § 3323 (relating to decree of court) and grounds have been established as provided in 23 Pa.C.S. § 3323(g).

(b) General rule.--Any designation described in subsection (a)(2) in favor of the individual's spouse or former spouse that was revocable by the individual at the individual's death shall become ineffective for all purposes and shall be construed as if the spouse or former spouse had predeceased the individual, unless it appears the designation was intended to survive the divorce based on:

(1) the wording of the designation;

(2) a court order;

(3) a written contract between the individual and the spouse or former spouse; or

(4) a designation of a former spouse as a beneficiary after the divorce decree has been issued.

(c) Liability.--

(1) Unless restrained by court order, no insurance company, pension or profit-sharing plan trustee or other obligor shall be liable for making payments to a spouse or former spouse which would have been proper in the absence of this section.

(2) Any spouse or former spouse to whom payment is made shall be answerable to anyone prejudiced by the payment.

(Dec. 16, 1992, P.L.1163, No.152, eff. imd.; Dec. 1, 1994, P.L.655, No.102, eff. 60 days; Oct. 27, 2010, P.L.837, No.85, eff. 60 days)

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