Teachers' Pensions
Supporting information

Supporting information

Your Benefit Statement contains a lot of important information. The FAQs below should help your understand what it all means.

  • About the Benefit Statement

    The benefits set out in your benefit statement show your accrued benefits as at the date of calculation provided in the summary page. However, please note that your benefits only include the service you had accrued up to the date of calculation, based on the information provided by your employer at the date of issue of the statement. For more details on the service and salary included within the calculation of your benefit estimate, please see the service history section of your statement. Your estimate is based on the service and salary details supplied by your employer(s). If you identify any errors please contact the employer at the time of service and request they check their records and notify us of any changes.

    Your statement is provided for illustrative purposes only and isn't a guarantee of benefits, nor does it assume any rights to such benefits. If at retirement it’s found that any Past Added Years payments (that you were paying by instalments) haven't been made in full, the amount of benefits quoted in this estimate may be less. In the event of any dispute over your pension benefits the appropriate legislation will prevail. Please note benefits shown on your statement don’t take into account: any earmarking split between you and your ex spouse/civil partner; or any Scheme Pays elections for Annual Allowance charges.

  • Teachers' Pensions Reference number

    Your personal Teachers’ Pensions Reference number (you may also know this as your DfE number) is shown at the top of the summary page. You should quote this number whenever you contact us or the Department for Education.

  • Your Pension Status

    We're reliant on information from employers to determine whether you're still active in the scheme. Where employers are late in supplying details of your service and salary we may record you as being a deferred member of the scheme. Your details will be updated as and when we receive the information from your employer. Your benefits aren't affected as, when processing any benefits payments, we always request details of the latest service and salary from employers and we'll use this to determine your pension status and benefits accordingly.

  • Your Normal Pension Age (NPA)

    Your Normal Pension Age is the age at which you can take your benefits, without any adjustments made to your annual pension. Please see our "When can you retire?" section online for more information.

    If you have service before 1 January 2007, have had a break in service and re-entered after 1 January 2007 or entered service for the first time after 1 January 2007, you may have two pension ages (60 and 65).

    If, on 1 April 2012, you were more than 13.5 years from your NPA you will have transitioned to the Career Average arrangement on 1 April 2015; if you were between 10 and 13.5 years from your NPA you will transition to the Career Average arrangement as and when your tapered protection ceases. If you were within 10 years you will remain in your Final Salary arrangement until you either take your pension benefits or lose that protection by leaving the Scheme and not returning within 5 years.

    For more information on the scheme arrangement NPA please check our "Working life" section.

  • Retirement Lump sum

    If you were a member of the Teachers’ Pension Scheme before 1 January 2007, you'll receive a pension and a lump sum equivalent to three times the amount of your pension. If you have service after 31 December 2006, you have the option to convert some of your pension to increase your lump sum (known as commutation).

    If you joined the Teachers’ Pension Scheme on or after 1 January 2007, you'll receive a pension only but you may exchange part of it for a lump sum.

    You can find more information about annual pensions and lump sums in our "Calculating benefits" section online. There's also a pension and lump sum calculator on our website, which you may find useful to determine the maximum amount of lump sum you can take and the consequent reduction to your annual pension.

    Please note that there’s an overall maximum lump sum allowed by HM Revenue and Customs.

    If you hold a valid certificate of Primary, Enhanced, Fixed or Individual Protection from HM Revenue and Customs, then you may be entitled to a higher retirement lump sum. Please visit www.hmrc.gov.uk or www.gov.uk for further information.

  • Reckonable Service

    Your reckonable service is any service that counts towards your benefits. It can include service from pensionable employment, any additional service previously purchased, and any service transferred into the Teachers’ Pension Scheme from another pension scheme.

    It’s vitally important to check that your service details are correct as any errors may be time-consuming to rectify at a later date, resulting in delays or an under-payment of pension benefits. If there are any errors please contact the employer at the time of service and ask them to notify us of the correction. Please note errors can only be rectified by employers; Teachers’ Pensions cannot directly alter service records without employer authorisation.

  • Past Added Years (PAY)

    All PAY that you've already paid for in full, including any PAY you're still purchasing by monthly deductions, will be included in your estimate. However, if at retirement you haven't fully paid for your PAY, your benefits will be less. At retirement, or indeed upon leaving pensionable employment, you'll have the option to take a paid-up credit for the amount of PAY you've paid for at the date of leaving/retiring. Alternatively, you can pay the outstanding contributions to enable the full amount of PAY to be credited. If you leave pensionable employment and have a PAY election that hasn't been concluded, please contact us.

    Please note: if you worked part-time or had days without pay during the PAY payment period, the amount of PAY to be credited to you will need to be adjusted accordingly once the payment period has concluded. PAY on your statement that's shown as ‘Past Added Years Purchased’ may need adjusting in this way, if so your benefits will be less than those quoted.

  • Days Out

    If your employer has included excluded days in their record of your service and salary, this will be mirrored on your Benefit Statement. Days excluded (i.e. (not worked and not counting towards reckonable service in the Final Salary arrangement) are used when deciding the actual reckonable service and salary rate for the period that counts towards your Final Salary benefits, or for Career Average benefits to decide the actual pensionable earnings in the time period. But if you’re part-time we ask your employer to provide your actual part-time pensionable earnings and, although we will still derive the number of days excluded in the period, it’s the actual reported pensionable earnings that will be used to determine your pension benefits.

  • Eight Days' Service Credit

    For the period from 1 December 1973 to 31 March 1974, the rate at which pension contributions were deducted from teachers’ salaries was reduced retrospectively from 6.75% to 6%. Instead of a refund, teachers who were in pensionable employment in this period were credited with an additional eight days of reckonable service. Teachers in pensionable employment for part of this period were credited with the relevant proportion of eight days.

  • Average Salary

    Your average salary is the salary used to calculate your Final Salary arrangement benefits, if any, when you retire*. The way it’s calculated depends on when you retire and if you have mixed service – final salary with a normal pension age of 60 and also final salary with a normal pension age of 65 – there may be two separate calculations. For further information about this please check "Calculating benefits".

    Restricted Salaries: Salaries that increase by more than 10% or the fixed amount year-on-year will be restricted to the previous year’s salary plus either 10% of the increase or the fixed amount, whichever is the highest.

    Salary revaluation: is applied up to the latest of service. It only applies, however, where there has been a change in your salary. If there has been no change, the salary is not revalued.

    Salary link: For transition members who moved from the Final Salary to the Career Average arrangement without a disqualifying break in service, the Average Salary will be calculated using salaries from your most recent service. This means that salary increases and career progression are taken into account for your Final Salary arrangement pension benefits, even after you have transitioned to the Career Average arrangement.

    * Career Average arrangement benefits are based on the pensionable earnings in each Scheme year, or part thereof, rather than a final Average Salary.

  • How are Pension Benefits Calculated?

    Final Salary pension benefits are calculated based on your final average salary, multiplied by your service, multiplied by the appropriate accrual rate. The accrual rate is dependent on the section of the Final Salary arrangement:

    Normal Pension Age = 60: Accrual rate is 1/80th

    Normal Pension Age = 65: Accrual rate is 1/60th

    Career Average benefits are calculated by using an accrual rate of 1/57th * applied to your pensionable earnings in the scheme year. At the end of each scheme year the accrued earned pension is then revalued. The pension accrued in the following scheme year is then added to this and at the end of that year the total amount is then revalued.

    * or 1/55th, 1/50th or 1/45th if you have taken out a Faster Accrual election in a particular year.

    Adjustments for early or late retirement, pension sharing, earmarking, scheme pays or lifetime allowance charges are then applied to the pension.

    Please see our "Planning retirement" section for more information

  • Your State Pension

    Your Annual Benefit Statement may also contain a forecast of your State Pension, based on the latest information that we hold. This is provided by The Pension Service, which is part of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). If there is no state benefit information this may be for one of the following reasons:

    • DWP have been unable to provide the information (this may be because the NI number we hold for you is incorrect); or
    • You have instructed us not to collect the information; or
    • You are already in receipt of your State Pension.

    Please note that your National Insurance Contributions are changing as the Teachers’ Pension Scheme will no longer be contracted-out. For further information please visit: www.gov.uk.

    Any queries you may have relating to your State Pension should be directed to the Future Pension Centre on 0345 3000 168 or visit www.gov.uk/future-pension-centre. For further information on the new state pension visit www.gov.uk/new-state-pension.

  • Annual and Lifetime Allowances

    There is a limit on the inputs that you can make to pension schemes before you are liable to an Annual Allowance tax charge.

    An input is calculated by measuring the growth in your accrued benefits at the beginning of the Pension Input Period (PIP) compared with the accrued benefits at the end of the PIP. The PIP for the Teachers’ Pension Scheme is, from 2015 / 2016, aligned with the tax year: 6 April – 5 April.

    If you have purchased any Additional Pension in the year, this will also need to be included in the calculation to determine the growth of benefits during the PIP.

    The Lifetime Allowance (LTA) is the maximum value of benefits (both pension and lump sum) received from all registered pension schemes, before an LTA charge becomes payable. This excludes any State Pension or pension you receive as a beneficiary. Please visit www.hmrc.gov.uk for further information.

  • Death In Service Benefits

    If you die while you're an active member of the Scheme you'll receive an in-service death grant of 3 times your average salary (final salary arrangement) or 3 times your full time equivalent annual rate of pensionable salary (career average arrangement). For part-time workers we use the full-time equivalent, not your part-time earnings.

    If you have qualifying service and a surviving adult and / or child dependent pension is payable it will be enhanced rather than simply based on a proportion of the family benefits pension accrued to date.

    If you die while in a period of additional service after retirement any previous lump sums paid will be deducted from the in-service death grant.

    Please note that we are reliant on employers informing us of when a member leaves their employment. If an employer has not provided this information you may be inadvertently recorded as being an active member, when in reality you are deferred. In such cases, the in-service death grant does not apply and is not payable.

  • Additional Pension Benefits

    If you're paying for additional pension via monthly instalments and decide to retire, leave the scheme or end the election before the term is complete, the actual additional pension will be based on the contributions actually paid and will therefore be less than the amount quoted here.

  • Pension Share Order

    If you have been through a divorce, your Benefit Statement may show that a Pension Share Order (PSO) has been made against your retirement benefits. Please note that the amount of benefits quoted in the estimate are the full value and haven't been reduced to take account of the PSO.

  • Late Retirement Enhancement

    If you take your retirement benefits after your Normal Pension Age you may be entitled to late retirement enhancement on the benefits at retirement. Please note that this enhancement isn’t included in the amount of benefits quoted in the estimate.

  • Restricted Lump Sums

    The amount of Tax Free Lump sum you are entitled to is restricted to 25% of your Lifetime Allowance. If your Lump Sum entitlement exceeds this limit, we will have to cap the amount of Lump Sum payable to you at this 25% Limit. Lumps sums in the Benefits Statement are restricted to 25% of the current standard Lifetime Allowance; if you have protection your personal allowance may be higher.

  • Stepping Down Election

    If you’ve made a stepping down election please note that the estimate has been based on the normal calculation of retirement benefits. The stepping down election that you have made however, if valid, guarantees a two-part calculation will be carried out at retirement by the Teachers' Pensions Scheme to establish the most beneficial pension and lump sum.

  • Phased Late Retirement Enhancement

    Where you take retirement from active service after your NPA (Normal Pension Age) you are entitled to a late retirement enhancement on the benefits accrued prior to your NPA. However, please note that this enhancement is not included in the illustration of the remaining scheme benefits after your phased retirement (as we don’t yet know when you’ll take the balance of your benefits).

  • Buy out of the standard rate (AAB Buy Out)

    If you’ve made an election to buy out the standard rate of reduction (AAB buy out),this will be shown on your statement. If you choose to work beyond the effective buy out pension age, without drawing your pension benefits in full, you won’t see any benefit from the election for the period you work between your buy out pension age and your Normal Pension Age. Contributions are not refunded where this is the case.

Forms

Ready to apply? Our forms page has everything you'll need to get started.

Forms

Calculators

Get an insight into how your pension is built and explore your options.

Calculators

FAQ's

Find the answers with our range of Frequently Asked Questions.

FAQs

Related Information

My Pension Online

Register