Division of CPF Assets (Monies, House, Investments) after a Divorce

Last updated on June 3, 2019

couple split money.

How can CPF-related assets such as CPF monies, the matrimonial home paid using CPF monies and CPF investments be divided in a divorce? Here are the key proceedings and information you need to be acquainted with.

Will CPF-Related Assets be Divided in a Divorce?

The court has the power to divide matrimonial assets between the divorcing parties in proportions which it thinks are just and equitable.

According to the Women’s Charter, matrimonial assets include any asset:

  • Acquired during the marriage; or
  • Acquired before the marriage and
    • Used by the couple or their children during the marriage; or
    • Which had been substantially improved during the marriage.

Gifts or inheritances that were substantially improved during the marriage are not considered matrimonial assets unless they are the matrimonial home.

Following this definition, the portion of CPF monies (and other related assets, such as CPF investments) that were accumulated during the marriage or paid towards the acquisition of the matrimonial home, which is in itself usually regarded as a matrimonial asset, can be considered matrimonial assets to be divided by the court in a divorce.

How is the Division of CPF Monies Carried Out?

The court holds the power to order a division of the parties’ CPF monies if the parties are unable to agree on how their matrimonial assets should be divided, and let the court decide on this matter on their behalf.

To ensure a fair distribution between you and your ex-spouse, factors such as the extent of financial and non-financial contributions to the marriage and the needs of each party after divorce will be considered.

Financial contributions include money spent to acquire matrimonial assets, while non-financial contributions include looking after the home.

If your ex-spouse is a Singapore Citizen or Singapore Permanent Resident and has been granted a portion of your CPF monies, the division can be done in 2 ways:

  1. Transfer order
  2. Charging order

If your ex-spouse is a foreigner, the court may only make a charging order.

1) Transfer order

Under a transfer order, the court can order an immediate transfer of your CPF savings to your ex-spouse’s CPF account, with the amount subject to the court’s discretion. This transfer of CPF monies can take place without you setting aside your retirement sum first.

Once the transfer is made, your ex-spouse can use these monies for approved CPF schemes such as housing, investment and education. He/she may also withdraw the monies when he/she turns 55.

To commence the transfer of CPF monies, you will need to submit the court order for the division of matrimonial assets to the CPF Board (CPFB).

To do so, log onto the CPF website using your SingPass account. Then, submit the form via My Requests > Other CPF Matters > Submit Court Order for Division of Matrimonial Assets.

2) Charging order

Under a charging order, your ex-spouse will be granted his/her share of your CPF monies in cash only when you become eligible to withdraw your CPF savings. Payment to the ex-spouse is subject to you setting aside your retirement sum first.

For the ex-spouse to receive payment, both parties have to submit the court order in person at the CPFB’s Retirement Withdrawals Department.

Once the CPFB has received your documents, the application will be processed and the monies will be paid to the party through GIRO within 10 working days or via cheque within 15 working days.

What about the Division of CPF Monies that were Used to Buy the Matrimonial Home?

The court can order you to transfer your share of the matrimonial home to your ex-spouse, with partial or no refunds made to your CPF account for your contributions to the property’s purchase price.

If you have been granted a partial refund of the CPF monies that you’ve used to purchase the property, your ex-spouse will transfer the refund amount to your CPF account(s) together with accrued interest.

Alternatively, if the court has decided not to award you any refund of the CPF monies you’ve used to purchase the property, then you will not be entitled to receive any refund. This is even if your ex-spouse later decides to sell the property.

Is it Possible to Divide Our CPF Investment Scheme Monies?

The CPF Investment Scheme (CPFIS) is applicable to parties who have invested their CPF monies in various places such as insurance products, bonds and shares to enhance their retirement savings. If you have been ordered by the court to transfer your share of the investments to your ex-spouse, there are 2 ways to do so.

1) Transfer order

The transfer order is done through:

  • An immediate transfer of your investments to your ex-spouse; or
  • A cash-in of your investments with the sale proceeds transferred to your ex-spouse.

To transfer the investments, log onto the CPF website using your SingPass account, click on My Requests under the my cpf Online Services panel > Investment > Apply to Transfer CPF Investments Sale Proceeds (Division of CPF-related Matrimonial Assets) and fill in the form accordingly.

2) Charging order

The court can order a charge to be placed on your investment sale proceeds. This permits your ex-spouse to withdraw the sale proceeds in cash:

  • When you turn 55 years old; or
  • Before you turn 55 years old, provided you are eligible to do so and have set aside your retirement sum.

If your ex-spouse is a foreigner, he/she can only request the court to make a charging order. You will also not need to set aside your retirement sum.

Other CPF-Related Divorce Matters

Division of HDB flat

If your matrimonial home is an HDB flat, you would need CPFB’s approval for your Agreed Matrimonial Property Plan (AMPP), which will formally set out the agreement between you and your spouse as to how your HDB flat is to be divided.

Before the AMPP is filed, both spouses must submit standard query forms to the HDB and CPFB for answers to queries such as:

  • The amount of CPF monies each party has used to buy the flat, and how much interest has accrued on this amount
  • The amount of CPF monies each party has in their CPF accounts
  • Whether either party has to set aside a certain amount of CPF monies when the HDB flat is sold

These queries help the court to decide how the flat should be distributed between the parties. HDB and CPFB will respond within 1 month upon receiving the queries.

After the AMPP has been prepared, the plaintiff (the party filing for divorce) must serve the AMPP on HDB. HDB will then give a written reply as to whether it agrees to the plan within 1 month of service.

However, if the parties cannot agree on how the HDB flat is to be divided, both spouses will each have to draw up a Proposed Matrimonial Property Plan (PMPP), detailing how the HDB flat should be divided in the divorce. In this case, only the plaintiff will have to submit standard query forms to the HDB and CPFB.

Updating your CPF nomination

Please note that CPF nominations are not revoked after a divorce. Therefore, if you had previously nominated your ex-spouse to receive your CPF monies after your death and you no longer wish for this to be the case, you may want to change your CPF nomination after the divorce.

Should you require legal assistance with your divorce proceedings, please do not hesitate to get in touch with any one of our divorce lawyers.

Before getting a divorce
  1. How to Get a Divorce in Singapore in 2019: Process and Requirements
  2. How Can I Divorce Overseas?
  3. Mandatory Parenting Programme Guide for Divorcing Parents
  4. Online Divorce in Singapore: How It Works and Should You Get One?
  5. Getting a Divorce Due to “Irreconcilable Differences” in Singapore
  6. How to Get a Divorce Within 3 Years of Marriage
  7. Personal Protection Orders (PPOs), Expedited Orders (EOs) and Domestic Exclusion Orders (DEOs) in Singapore
  8. Prenuptial Agreements in Singapore
  9. What are the Legal Grounds for Getting a Divorce?
  10. Separation in Singapore
  11. Annulment of Marriage in Singapore
  12. Practical Preparations for a Divorce
  13. 3 Finance Questions To Ask Before a Divorce
Divorce Fees
  1. Comprehensive Guide to Divorce Fees in Singapore (Updated Sep 2018)
Getting a Divorce Lawyer
  1. The Complete Guide to Choosing a Good Divorce Lawyer in Singapore
  2. First Meeting with Your Divorce Lawyer: What to Bring
  3. Don’t Just Go for the Cheapest Divorce Lawyer in Singapore
  4. Find Experienced Divorce Lawyers in Singapore
  5. Child Custody Lawyers in Singapore
Proving Irretrievable Breakdown of Marriage
  1. How to Prove Adultery for Divorce Purposes in Singapore
  2. Getting a Divorce: How to Prove Desertion
  3. How to Prove Unreasonable Behaviour
  4. How to Prove Separation for a Singapore Divorce
Application for Divorce Part I: Dissolution of Marriage
  1. Procedure for Dissolution of Marriage
  2. Divorce Mediation in Singapore
  3. Divorce Application: What to Do If Your Spouse Cannot be Found
  4. Simplified Uncontested Divorce vs Contested Divorce in Singapore
Application for Divorce Part 2: Ancillary Matters (Maintenance, Assets, Custody)
  1. Procedure for Ancillary Matters
  2. What Happens to Gifts Between Spouses During a Divorce?
  3. What Happens to Property and Assets Located Overseas Upon a Divorce in Singapore?
  4. Getting Divorced: Child Maintenance in Singapore
  5. Maintenance of Spouse in a Singapore Divorce
  6. Guide to Child Custody, Care and Control, and Access in Singapore
  7. How Does the Court Divide Matrimonial Assets in a Singapore Divorce?
  1. What Happens to Your HDB Flat after Divorce?
  2. Variation of Maintenance Orders in Singapore
  3. Division of CPF Assets (Monies, House, Investments) after a Divorce
  4. Divorce Certificates in Singapore: How to Get a Copy and Other FAQs
  5. Transfer of Matrimonial Home to Ex-Spouse After Divorce
  6. What to Do If Your Ex-Spouse Denies You Access to Your Child
  7. What Happens If Your Ex-Spouse Does Not Provide Maintenance?
Expatriate Divorce
  1. Can Foreigners Divorce in Singapore?
  2. Expat or Foreigner Divorce in Singapore: 10 Legal Issues to Consider
  3. Immigration Issues for Divorcing Expatriates
  4. Hague Convention in Singapore: Overseas Child Abduction in Divorce
  5. Case Study: Cross-Border Child Custody and the Hague Convention on International Child Abduction
Muslim or Syariah Divorce
  1. Muslim Divorce in Singapore
  2. Applying for Nafkah Idaah and Mutaah in a Muslim Divorce in Singapore
Other divorce matters
  1. What Happens to Your HDB Flat after an Annulment?
  2. Case Study - Love conquers All: The Divorce That Didn’t Happen