Ill Health

Ill-health Retirement can be taken if a member becomes too ill to work during their teaching career. This can be taken before their Normal Pension Age (NPA) without the usual reduction applied to an early retirement pension.

Steps for Ill-health Retirement

  • The application forms for Ill-healthRetirement should be completed. The member should complete the application form whilst you and your occupational health advisors should complete the medical evidence form.
    (If your occupational health advisors consider that the application does not contain enough medical information to enable it to be fully considered, they must provide the applicant with the opportunity to consider if there is additional information they can provide.)
  • When a medical condition is severe enough to warrant Ill-health Retirement, it’s reasonable to expect that the member will have been assessed by a specialist. It will greatly help in the consideration of the medical information if this is the case and supporting evidence is provided by the specialist. No medical reports can be obtained by Teachers' Pensions on the applicant’s behalf
  • The forms should be sent to us together with any additional medical evidence that the member wants to include. If the forms are not correctly completed and signed, they will be rejected
  • Applications and supporting medical evidence are considered by Medical Advisors appointed by the Secretary of State and the final decision is made by us, taking into account the Medical Advisor observations
  • If there’s insufficient evidence to allow the Medical Advisor to make a fully considered recommendation, the member’s application for Ill-health Retirement won’t be accepted
  • If Ill-health is granted and the member is still actively teaching, you must arrange for this to cease immediately. You must also arrange for your payroll team/supplier to provide details of the member’s pensionable service and salary from the date of their last submission to us, up to the last day of pensionable service.

What will the member receive if the application is accepted?

There are two different levels of Ill-health benefits that can be awarded. Accrued benefits are awarded if the member is assessed as being permanently unable to teach but can still work in another role. With accrued benefits, a member’s service won’t be enhanced.

Enhanced benefits are awarded if the member is assessed as being unable to undertake any type of gainful employment. For members in the final salary arrangements their service will be enhanced, adding half of the prospective service to their normal pension age, with the appropriate accrual rate of 1/80th (NPA60) or 1/60th (NPA65) to acquire the final enhancement. For members in the career average arrangement it is their accrued earned pension that is enhanced, based on the annual rate of pensionable earnings and half of the prospective service to their normal pension age, with the accrual rate of 1/57th to derive the final enhancement.

Where a member works part-time any enhancement will be calculated using the annual rate of pensionable earnings as if the position was full-time. Where a member works more than full-time, the full-time equivalent salary is calculated by taking account of the rate for each employer involved.

Where a member’s condition is serious and their life expectancy is severely restricted, i.e. is less than a year, their pension can be paid as a one-off lump sum of approximately five times the initial pension. The member needs to request this when making their application for ill-health retirement to ensure that the request is assessed and paid if appropriate, based on the report from the Schemes’ medical advisor. The payment of a serious ill health one-off lump sum extinguishes the member’s right to any further pension payments from the Scheme.

What if the member has left pensionable employment?

Provided the member remains in a contractual relationship with you, they’ll be treated as ‘in-service’. If they leave pensionable service due to ill-health and apply for Ill-health benefits because of the same illness, within 2 years of leaving, they’ll be treated as still being in service.

As and when the member reaches their Normal Pension Age, they'll be paid age and not Ill-health benefits. This will not affect the amount of pension they receive.

Short-service serious ill-health grant

If a member has more than one, but less than two years’ service they can, in the event of a terminal illness, receive a short service serious Ill-health grant.

Last Updated: 08/03/2021 15:06

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