Help & FAQs
Questions? Pensions can be confusing and understanding your ABS from your AVC can sometimes feel overwhelming when all your want is a straightforward answer. We have collated the most frequently asked questions by our members into one place in plain easy to understand language to help you navigate your way around your pension.
Have you checked your scheme specific FAQs?
Firefighter Pension FAQs
This section contains our most commonly asked questions from members of the Firefighters’ Scheme.
Local Government Pension FAQs
This section contains our most commonly asked questions from members of the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS).
Police Pension FAQs
This section contains our most commonly asked questions from members of the Police Officers’ Scheme.
If you joined a Local Government Pension Scheme before 2014 (or a Police or Fire scheme before 2015), you will have been a member of a Final Salary scheme. This means that your retirement income (relating to this period) is calculated using your final year’s salary (or your highest annual salary within the last three years of employment).
For every year you were a member of an LGPS pension before 2008, 1/80th of your final salary will be added to your pension account to make up your annual retirement income. And for every year between 2008 and 2014 (or 2015 for Fire and Police Members), 1/60th of your final salary will be added.
Along with any CARE pension you build up, these figures will help to make up your annual retirement income.
If you joined a Local Government Pension Scheme after 2014 (or a Police or Fire scheme after 2015), you will have a Career Average Revalued Earnings pension (CARE pension for short). This is based on your average earnings (pensionable pay) built up over the course of your career – including salary, bonuses, overtime, maternity/paternity pay.
Each year, 1/49th of your pensionable pay is put into your pension account to make up your annual retirement income. At the end of the year, your contributions are adjusted to reflect inflation. This happens every year and as your pension account grows, so too does your annual retirement income.
If you die as an active member of the scheme, a ‘survivor pension’ is payable to any eligible family members, such as a husband, wife or partner or child. We also pay a ‘death grant’, which is a tax-free lump sum that is worked out as a multiple of your salary.
Yes, your pension is treated as income and is therefore taxable (although any lump sum you receive up-front is tax free).
As long as you’ve been paying into your pension scheme for at least 2 years (or a minimum of three months for Fire Service schemes), you can claim your work pension from the earliest date applicable to the scheme of which you are a member of – or earlier if you are retiring due to ill health.
Your work pension: this is the money that’s taken directly from your wage each month and topped up by your employer. To view your contributions and calculate your latest benefits, you need to set up an account and register your details at My pensions online
Your state pension: as long as you have paid the necessary national insurance contributions, you will also be entitled to a state pension (when you reach State Pension Age). Full details of your state pension benefits are available at the gov.uk website
From this website
- Click My Pension Online, and click through selecting your scheme, then click ‘Go’
- Select ‘Forgotten username/password’
- Enter the requested details
- You will receive an email to change the forgotten details.
From this website
- Select ‘Sign up to My Pension Online’ and click through selecting your pension status, then your scheme, then clicking ‘Go’
- Enter your Surname, National Insurance number, Date of Birth and Email address
- If your email address is on file you will receive a link which will ask you complete the sign-up details by creating a username, password and 2 security questions
- If your email address is not on file you will receive a letter in the post which will give you the activation key
- Once the activation key is received then click ‘Login’
- Go to ‘Complete registration’
- Enter your Surname, National Insurance number, Date of Birth and the activation key (*match the capitals / lower case letters*)
- Once accepted you will be asked to create a username, password and 2 security questions.
If your LGPS benefits are subject to a Pension Sharing Order and you remarry, enter a new civil partnership or into a cohabiting partnership, any spouse’s pension, civil partner’s pension or eligible cohabiting partner’s pension payable following your death will also be reduced.
If you remarry or enter into a new civil partnership and then divorce or dissolve your civil partnership again, your remaining pension rights can be subject to further division, although a Pension Sharing Order cannot be issued if an Earmarking Order has already been issued against your LGPS pension rights. Similarly, an Earmarking Order cannot be issued if your pension benefits are already subject to a Pension Sharing Order in respect of the marriage/civil partnership.
Annual Benefit Statement FAQs
Our most commonly asked questions on the Annual Benefit Statement.
Our most frequently asked questions on divorce and dissolving civil partnerships.
Our LGPS Employer Top FAQs cover some really useful topics.
Here you can find the most commonly asked general queries on pensions and LPPA.
My Pension Online FAQs
Here you can find the most frequently asked questions about the My Pension Online service.
Our most frequently asked questions on retirement.