THE NEW CIVIL SERVICE PENSION SCHEME: alpha
Support for members to decide their Civil Service Pension benefits from April 2015
Some of you will have to make a very important choice about the pension benefits they earn from April 2015. As DPF cannot identify individually which members are affected, I am writing to all members to enable you to work out whether or not you belong to this group.
Who is affected?
The following members will be given an option:
Members of the PCSPS who were within 10 and 13.5 years of pension age on 1 April 2012. That is members of Classic, Classic Plus or Premium who were in service on 1 April 2012 and born between 2 April 1962 and 1 September 1965 (inclusive) and members of Nuvos who were in service on 1 April 2012 and born between 2 April 1957 and 1 September 1960 (inclusive).
What is the option?
(1) To stay in the current section of the PCSPS for a period of time or
(2) To move to the new pension scheme, called alpha, from April 2015.
The period of time can vary from 2 months to 6 years and 10 months. The oldest members in the option group have the choice to stay in their existing scheme for the longest.
When will I have to make the choice?
Option packs will be sent to members in October and will have to be returned in December. DPF would suggest that it might be prudent to leave your determination to the latest possible opportunity. The DPF are in negotiations with the department with regards to securing a reduction to the age at which a member will have access to an unreduced pension in the new scheme. We are striving to have further information available before the closing date for the submission of these option forms. The scheme administrators will acknowledge your decision in January 2015.
Surely I am better off staying in my existing scheme for as long as possible?
Not necessarily. Many people will benefit from important features of the alpha scheme such as the more generous accrual rate. The choice you make will have an impact upon the pension you retire on and although the difference between staying on your current scheme or joining alpha could be minimal it could affect your standard of living when you choose to retire.
It is therefore recommended that you study the options available carefully prior to making your determination. Everyone’s situation will be different. You will be sent an options pack which will give you all the information you need to help you make this decision.
Can I get more information about this choice?
Yes, more information is available from the Civil Service Pensions website at the link below. These pages will be updated regularly.
Which option will be better for me?
Unfortunately, DPF are not indemnified to provide financial advice. Indeed no one can be 100% sure which option will work out best as this depends upon many factors relating to your career that cannot be controlled or predicted with any certainty and we re-iterate that everyone’s situation will be different. You will be sent an options pack, which will give you all the information you need to help you make this decision.