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What if I do not contribute towards social security, but instead make a contribution towards my pension?

The large majority of those in the workforce pay into social security. However, there is a small population of those who instead of paying into social security, make a contribution towards their pension benefits. These individuals include members of the Civil Service Retirement System, certain policemen and firemen, some teachers and certain state employees. Whether you contribute towards social security or towards your retirement benefits depends upon the provisions set forth in your pension plan.

If you do not contribute towards social security, you may want to consider having a social security offset analysis done on your pension. In basic terms, this analysis will separate your actual pension benefits from what could be considered your "hypothetical social security benefit." This will enable you to remove any benefits you will receive in lieu of social security from the picture, thereby, providing a value of just the pension benefits to be used in the division process.

Certain courts have recommended that such an offset is appropriate, and other courts are still examining this issue.