Early payment of Deferred Benefits
If you left the LGPS with a deferred benefit between 1 April 1998 and 31 March 2014...
You can now choose to take early payment of your deferred benefits from age 55 (rather than 60). The change to the scheme rules means that you no longer need the consent of your former employer to take your benefits between the age of 55 and 59. Members who left the LGPS with a deferred benefit on or after 1 April 2014 (except councillors) were already able to choose to take early payment of their deferred benefits from age 55 without needing their former employer’s consent, and this has not changed.
If you wish to claim your deferred benefits at age 55 we will require a written one month notice period.
If you left the LGPS with a deferred benefit before 1 April 1998...
The scheme rules have been changed to allow you to take your benefit from age 55 (rather than 60) or the date your deferred benefit will be payable without a reduction for early payment – this is called your Normal Pension Age (NPA). Your NPA will be between age 60 and 65 depending on when you joined the scheme – you can find this information on your deferred annual benefit statement.
If you wish to claim your deferred benefits before age 60 we will require a written one month notice period.
If you left the LGPS with a deferred benefit after 1 April 2014...
The earliest age you can receive payment of your deferred benefits is from age 55. If you wish to claim your deferred benefits before age 60 we will require a written three month notice period.
Please note: Deferred benefits paid earlier than your NPA will normally be subject to a reduction to take account of the fact that your annual pension will be paid for longer. How much your deferred benefits are reduced by depends on how early you receive them.
Early payment of deferred benefits for pension credit members
If you were awarded a share of your ex-spouse’s LGPS pension as part of a divorce settlement and you are a pension credit member in the LGPS, you can now elect to take payment of these benefits from age 55 regardless of when the pension sharing order took effect. Before the change, if the pension sharing order took effect before 1 April 2014 or your ex-spouse left the LGPS before 1 April 2014 you could only choose to take early payment from age 60.
Reductions to your benefits for early payment
If you choose to take your deferred benefits earlier than your Normal Pension Age (NPA) they will normally be reduced to take account of the fact that your pension will be paid for longer. How much your deferred benefits are reduced by depends on how early you take them. The reduction is based on the length of time (in years and days) between the date you take them and the date your deferred benefit will be payable without a reduction for early payment. If you are unsure when your NPA is you should check your annual benefit statement.
The early reduction factors are set by the Government and can vary from time to time. The current factors can be found on the national LGPS member website - www.lgpsmember.org/more/reductions.php
More information about taking your deferred is available on the national LGPS website - www.lgpsmember.org/arl/already-left-when.php
Deferred Pension Estimates
To request an individual estimate of the current value of your deferred benefits please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01628 796 668. Alternatively your latest annual deferred benefit statement can be found by logging on to your online account - 'my pension ONLINE'. Your benefit statements can be found in the 'My Documents' section.
Premature payment of deferred benefits is possible if your health breaks down before Normal Pension Age (NPA), provided your former Scheme employer is satisfied that, had you remained in their employment, you would have been retired on the grounds of permanent ill-health. If your former Scheme employer no longer exists your request will be forwarded to the Administering Authority.
If you would like to investigate this further please put your request in writing (detailing the reasons for your application) to:
Royal County of Berkshire Pension Fund
22-30 York Road
Please quote you National Insurance number on all correspondence.