Teachers' Pensions

Family benefits

After you die, the Teachers' Pension Scheme can provide benefits for your loved ones. Find out more here.

  • What are Family benefits?

    In the event of your death a pension is payable to your beneficiaries. In the career average arrangement, an enhancement is applied if you die in service. For further details on family benefits please check the Life events section of our website.

  • Will benefits be paid to my dependants after I die?

    The table below sets out the benefits payable depending upon your individual circumstances.


    All service from 6.4.88 counts for family pensions.

    If you are a male teacher married to a female all service from 1.4.72 counts for family pensions.

    Civil Partners All service from 6.4.88 counts for family pensions.
    Nominated Partners

    All service from 1.1.07 counts for family pensions.

    Nominations must be signed by member and partner

    Dependency checks are made after the member dies. 


  • What is a Death Grant?

    The in-service death grant is the payment made in the event you die while still in-service, i.e. an active member paying contributions to the Scheme. If you’re in the Career Average arrangement it’s three times your annual rate of pensionable earnings, but if you’re part-time or irregular this is assessed as if you were full-time. If you’re in the Final Salary arrangement it’s three times the full-time equivalent. If you die while in additional service after retirement (ASAR) any previous lump sum benefit payment will be offset from the grant.

    The in-service death grant is payable during periods of family leave covered by part-salary and / or statutory benefits, or a period of non-pensionable family leave that follows immediately on from a period of pensionable service. It’s also payable during: periods of absence due to illness as long as you’re receiving at least half pay; you were an active member called up for duty in Her Majesty's armed forces and made an election to treat the period as pensionable service; or you die within 12 months of leaving all pensionable employment due to incapacity (and a retirement pension other than a phased retirement pension hasn't become payable in relation to that service prior to your death). Otherwise an out-of-service death grant is payable, which is based on 2.25 times the value of your annual pension, had you been eligible to receive it.

    Please ensure you review your nomination regularly to ensure it reflects your wishes.

    To be extra confident and reassured you might like to make a new death grant nomination via My Pension Online.

  • I've started receiving my pension, what can my spouse expect to receive when I die?

    You can find the value of your family benefits on your award papers. You can access these at any time by logging into your My Pension Online account.

  • If I’ve already retired and I am living with my partner, will they receive a pension?

    If you’re not married or in a civil partnership you will need to nominate your partner, which you can do by completing the Partner nomination form online or completing a paper form. Note that we will require proof of financial interdependence.

  • I’m not married and live with my partner. Can I provide benefits for them?

    Yes, members who aren’t married or have not entered into a civil partnership are able to provide family benefits for nominated partners but you must complete a nomination form. You and your partner must be financially interdependent and have lived with each other for a minimum of two years. If you don’t complete a nomination form we’ll be unable to pay benefits to your partner.

    Only service from 1 January 2007 counts towards family benefits but if you’re in pensionable service when you make the nomination you can buy in pre 1 January 2007 service for a surviving partner benefit at full cost.

    It’s your responsibility to ensure your nomination is kept up to date. The easiest way to do that is via My Pension Online.

  • If I remarry, enter into a civil partnership or nominate a partner after I retire, will a pension be paid to my dependants after I die?

    The table below sets out the benefits payable depending upon your individual circumstances.


    If you are married or have registered a civil partnership all your service from 6 April 1988 automatically counts for family benefits. You can purchase service that was completed before April 1988 but that must be within six months of getting married or registering a civil partnership, for the first time.

    If you are a male teacher married to a female your service will count from 1 April 1972 for family benefits.

    Civil Partners If you register a civil partnership after leaving pensionable employment, only service from 6.4.88 counts towards the pension, regardless of whether pre '88 service has been purchased.
    Nominated Partners

    If you left pensionable employment before 1.1.07 you can't nominate a partner unless you return to pensionable teaching employment.

    You can't cover previous service after retiring unless you return to pensionable teaching employment. 

  • What death benefits are paid while drawing Phased Retirement?

    If you’re in pensionable employment, what your beneficiaries receive will depend on which scheme arrangement you were in at the time of your death.

    If you’re in pensionable service in the final salary arrangement then the death grant will be three times your average salary, less any lump sum paid when you took your phased benefits. If you’re in pensionable service in the career average arrangement it will be three times your final full-time equivalent salary at the time of your death.

    Under both arrangements, if you die within five years of drawing Phased Retirements, your beneficiaries will also receive a lump sum of five years pension, less any pension paid.

  • At what age will a child’s pension cease?

    The rules on the continuation of a child’s pension differ slightly depending on whether the member was in receipt of a pension before 6 April 2006 or not.

    If the member was receiving a pension prior to 6 April 2006, the child’s pension will continue until they are 17 or until they leave full-time education.

    If the member’s pension came into payment after 5 April 2006, the child will continue to receive a pension until age 17 unless they continue in full-time education up to a maximum age of 23. In all cases, if the child marries, takes up employment or dies, the pension will cease.

  • How long will an adult dependant’s pension be paid?

    If the member had pensionable employment on or after 1 January 2007 then the adult dependant’s pension will be paid for life. If the member had no pensionable employment on or after 1 January 2007, the pension will cease if the adult dependant remarries, enters a civil partnership or cohabits. The dependant’s pension will always cease when the dependant dies.


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