Raymond Boulds (defendant) and Elena Nielsen (plaintiff) lived together in a domestic partnership from 1993 until their separation in 2009. They were never married, but they occasionally wore wedding rings. They had three children together. Boulds worked full time supporting the family financially while Nielsen stayed at home to care for the children. Boulds included Nielsen as a dependent on his tax return. Through Boulds’s employer, Boulds accumulated an insurance death benefit, a retirement account, and a pension under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). After the couple’s separation, the superior court determined that the death benefit and retirement account were Boulds’s separate property and that the pension was partnership property. Boulds appealed.