Earlier this year, the New Jersey Appellate Division encouraged the Police and Fire Retirement Board to devise a formula to allocate the marital and non marital aspects of Disability Pensions for marital distribution purposes. Larrsion v. Larrison 392 NJS 1 (App Div 2007.)
The Board has not yet provided such guidance. Accordingly in a very recent decision the Appellate Court took the initiative and developed a formula for the allocation of the marital portion of a police or fireman’s disability pension. In an extremely well reasoned and well written opinion by Judge Jane Grall (Sternesky v. Sternesky, released 10.25.2007) the Court develops a formula which it directs the "trial courts to apply in the absence of relevant guidance from the Legislature or Board" .
The formula is somewhat complex and must be specifically analyzed in the factual context of a particular case, but is "must reading" for anyone handling a divorce involving Police or Fireman Disability case and directive information for any other disability type pension.