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EPN 479 – Buying added pension – reminder for 2016-17 and information about purchases (including EPA) for 2017-18

Audience: 

  • Pension Leads & HR managers
  • All staff responsible for dealing with added pension and EPA contracts and enquiries from members.

Action:

  • Issue the attached notice “Information for Civil Service Pension Scheme members” to all staff by 12 January 2017
  • Remind your payroll provider to expect a possible increase in the volume of added pension and EPA instructions from MyCSP
  • Note the information about purchases from 2017-18.

Timing: 

  • Immediate – to enable staff to apply within the deadlines

Detail

1. Members who wish to pay extra to top up their benefits in any of the classic, classic plus, premium, nuvos or alpha sections of the Civil Service pension scheme can buy added pension (EPNs 177 and 193 refer). In addition, members of alpha can also buy an EPA. The attached information notice advises members of the approaching deadlines for applying and tells them how to apply if they are interested.

2. For purchases before 1 April 2017, the maximum amount of added pension that member can buy is as follows:

classic: £5,200 (plus lump sum of £15,600
premium, classic plus and nuvos: £6,500
alpha: £6,500

3. Added pension can be bought with a lump sum (either through payroll or by cheque) or by monthly contributions (through payroll).  Alpha members cannot pay by lump sum during their first 12 months of alpha membership. EPA (alpha members only) can only be bought by monthly contributions. Members who wish to pay for their added pension by monthly contributions can only start from 1 April (see information about purchases for 2017-18 below). EPA purchases can only start from 1 April (or the date the member joins Alpha if different).

4. Members who wish to buy added pension with a lump sum through payroll before the end of the scheme year must ensure that their application is received by MyCSP by 22 February 2017, to enable them to check and process that application, and inform the relevant employer in time for deduction to be made in the March pay run.

5. Members who wish to buy added pension with a lump sum by cheque before the end of the scheme year must ensure that their application and cheque are received by MyCSP by 24 February 2017, to enable them to check and process the application, and pass the cheque to Cabinet Office.

6. This information applies to member who have been in service for more than 12 months; the rules vary for new entrants. This is highlighted in the attached message and new entrants are advised to contact MyCSP for advice on eligibility.

7. Please issue this notice as soon as possible and remind your payroll provider to expect added pension and EPA instructions from MyCSP

Purchases for 2017-18

Added Pension

8. Classic, classic plus, premium, nuvos and alpha members will be able to buy added pension in those schemes in 2017-18 for as long as they remain members.  The maximum amount of added pension that members can buy in 2017-18 is:

classic: £5,300 (plus lump sum of £15,900)
premium, classic plus and nuvos: £6,600
alpha: £6,600*

* this limit may be reduced if the member is also buying EPA - see below

9. If and when classic, classic plus, premium and nuvos members move into alpha, they will only be able to buy added pension and/or EPA in alpha from that point on. The limit for alpha added pension and EPA is also £6,600 and will be separate from the limit for classic, classic plus, premium and nuvos (so it will be possible for members to buy the maximum amount in alpha even if they have already bought the maximum amount in classic, classic plus, premium, or nuvos).

EPA

10. An alpha member cannot buy EPA if they have bought the maximum amount of added pension. Otherwise, there is no limit on the amount of an EPA a member can buy. However, the amount of EPA bought counts towards the limit on added pension that a member can buy.

Monthly contributions

11. Members who wish to take out a contract to buy added pension or an EPA by monthly contributions for 2017-18 must send their completed application form to MyCSP by 17 March 2017.