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EPN362 - PCSPS Awards - Reconciliation Checks

Audience

This Notice will be of particular interest to:

  • HR Managers and Shared Services providers

Action

  • To note the change to the employer reconciliation check process and ensure that the revised process is followed

Timing

  • The first revised reconciliation check report will be issued in respect of September 2013 (report issued in October)
  1. Background

    Currently, one of the control mechanisms that Capita as pensioner payroll provider operates on behalf of the scheme is to issue monthly reconciliation check reports to PCSPS participating employers. These reports are generated for each employer
    where, during the preceding month, a PCSPS award has been processed, and/or a new payment made to (or in respect of) one or more of their current or former employees. Therefore, larger employers will receive these reports every month, whereas smaller employers will only receive them occasionally.
  2. On receipt of the reconciliation check report, the employer is meant to confirm that every member listed on the report is a current or former employee of theirs. However, enquiries we have made suggest that adherence to this process is fairly sporadic –
    partly because of the difficulty some employers have in identifying former employees who may have left decades earlier.
  3. Employer responsibility
    This check is essentially an anti-fraud measure. It exists to confirm that people claiming PCSPS benefits actually exist and worked for who they claim to have worked for. It is not a check on the amount of benefit that they will receive. Employer cooperation
    is essential for this check to work. That said, we have recognised that the check has to be a practicable one.
  4. Revised reconciliation check report
    Following discussions with a number of employers, we have revised and simplified the reconciliation check. Going forward, we only intend to ask employers to carry out reconciliation checks of awards made to (or in respect of) current, or recently current,
    employees. So we will not be asking employers to make checks, for example, when the preserved award of a former employee comes into payment, or when a former employee dies in deferment or in retirement.
  5. From October, the monthly reconciliation check report sent to employers will list awards in the following groups:

    - Age retirement direct from service
     - Preserved award (but not preserved awards coming into payment)
    - All types of early retirement (but not the CSCS element of the award)
    - Ill health retirement (all types, but NOT early payment of preserved award)
    - Transfers out where no preserved award already exists
    - Death in service
    - Refund of contributions (where a member leaves with less than 2 years’ service)
    - Partial Retirement
  6. For each award type, the report will include the following:

    - Member’s name
    - National Insurance number
    - Date of birth
    - Last day of service (where applicable)
    - Employer code
  7. Where a member appears on the monthly report that the employer does not recognise, or where someone the employer expects to see on the report does not appear, employers should seek to resolve this initially direct with MyCSP. Cases that cannot
    be resolved with MyCSP should be referred to SME.
  8. Please note that the monthly reconciliation checks form an important part of the scheme’s error identification and fraud prevention controls. The completion of the monthly reconciliation checks is something that will continue to feature on the annual
    Accounting Officer Certificate.

Contacts

Enquiries regarding content please refer to Scheme Management Executive SMEemployers@cabinet-office.gsi.gov.uk

You can find electronic copies of the Employers’ Pension Guide, all current EPNs and forms on our website.

Enquiries regarding distribution or to receive in a different format
SMEemployers@cabinet-office.gsi.gov.uk

This notice is for employers and should not be issued to scheme members.

If members have any queries about their scheme, you should direct them to the Civil Service pensions website or to your Pension Service Centre for information.