WHEN CAN I RETIRE?
When you retire, you can look forward to receiving a pension that increases every year in line with the cost of living, for the rest of your life.
There is scope to retire and draw your benefits from as young as age 55, right up to age 65 and even beyond. In cases of ill health, there is no age limit at all.
There is one important condition to draw your benefits before age 65, you must have at least 3 months membership or have brought in a transfer from another pension scheme. Find out more about when you can retire from the LGPS:
- Early retirement at my request
- Flexible retirement
- Early retirement through redundancy or efficiency
- Ill health retirement
Planning for Retirement
Nowadays, comparatively few of us work to the age of 65. Many decide to retire earlier and as a member of the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS), this option is available.
Sometimes early retirement is a necessity rather than a choice perhaps because of redundancy or deteriorating health making it impossible for you to continue working. Your LGPS benefits, even in these circumstances, can provide you with an immediate retirement pension, which may even be enhanced.
Opinion varies as to just when is the best time to start planning for your retirement. Whether you are planning well in advance or you are about to retire, the earlier you take action the better.
The Fund produces packs of information for members to use in both planning for, and during, their retirement. They comprise; a guide to retirement, death grant and survivor nomination forms and a customer questionnaire, produced by the Fund, as well as two guides for pensioners, produced by the Department for Work & Pensions (DWP).
If you are over 58, planning to retire, and would like some helpful literature, a pack can be obtained from your Pension Liaison Officer, who is normally based in either your Finance or Personnel department.
How will my annual pension be calculated?
The two main factors used to calculate your retirement pension are:
For each year of your total membership you receive an annual pension based on 1/60th of your final pay. For example, if you have 30 years total membership, you would receive 30/60ths or one half, of your final year's pay as your annual pension.
Can I exchange some of my pension to give myself a tax-free lump sum?
Yes. You can exchange part of your annual pension to take a tax-free lump sum. You can take up to 25% of the capital value of your LGPS benefits as a lump sum.
Every £1 of annual pension that you give up you will receive an extra £12 lump sum. In the same way, giving up £100 of your annual pension would give you an extra £1,200 lump sum.