Flexible Retirement

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Number 55Rather than continuing in your job to your Normal Pension Age or beyond you may wish to consider the possibility of flexible retirement. 
 
From age 55, if you reduce your hours or move to a less senior position, and provided you have met the 2 years vesting period in the Scheme and your employer agrees, you can draw some or all of the pension benefits you have built up, helping you ease into retirement. Your employer will have a policy on flexible retirement. You can ask your employer for details of their policy.  
 
If your employer agrees to flexible retirement you can still draw your wages/salary from your job on the reduced hours or grade and continue paying into the LGPS, building up further benefits in the Scheme.
 
Your election to receive benefits has to be made to the Fund.
 

Do I have to draw all my pension benefits if I take flexible retirement?

If your employer agrees to flexible retirement then you would have to draw:
 
  • all of the benefits that relate to any pre 1 April 2008 membership, plus
  • all, none or some of the benefits that relate to your membership from 1 April 2008 to 31 March 2014, plus
  • all, none or some of the benefits that relate to your pension built up from 1 April 2014, plus
  • any additional benefits including added years, additional pension being purchased either through APCs/SCAPCs or ARCs, additional pension awarded by your employer and any AVCs (should you choose to draw these).
 

Will my pension and lump sum be reduced if I take flexible retirement?

If you take flexible retirement before your Normal Pension Age your benefits, initially calculated as in the section Can I choose to retire and draw my pension benefits before my Normal Pension Age? will normally be reduced for early payment.
 
If you were a member of the LGPS on 30 September 2006, some or all of your benefits paid early could be protected from the reduction if you have Rule of 85 protections.
 
Your employer may, however, determine not to apply all or part of any reduction. You can ask them what their policy on this is.
 
If you receive payment of your benefits on flexible retirement, then your benefits will not be subject to reduction or suspension for re-employment whilst you are in a job with the employer that allowed you to take flexible retirement.
 
If you take flexible retirement after your Normal Pension Age your benefits will be increased to reflect late payment.