46. What happens if I die in service?

The Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) will pay a lump sum, normally to the person or people you have nominated. Your Annual Benefit Statement (ABS) shows your nominee(s).

The lump sum will be the greater of:

  • twice your final pay less any lump sums already paid from any section of the Civil Service pension arrangements;

or

  • five times the pension you have built up (including any added pension you had bought), less any pension (but excluding any lump sum) already paid from nuvos.

For this purpose, final pay means the better of:

  • your pensionable earnings in your final year;

or

  • your highest pensionable earnings in any of the last 10 scheme years (with earlier years uprated in line with rises in the cost of living).

47. What if I die after leaving the scheme?

If you die after leaving the scheme, your family or representative should contact the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP). If you die within five years of starting to draw your pension, the Scheme will pay a lump sum representing the balance of five years’ pension (including any added pension you had bought) to the person or people you have named. If you are over 75 when you die, we cannot pay a lump sum due to tax rules. So any outstanding balance will be paid annually in arrears to your nominee(s) as a pension until the five-year period has expired.

If you leave the scheme and then die before drawing your pension, there will usually be a payment to your nominee(s) of a lump sum of five times your preserved pension (including any added pension you had bought), increased in line with rises in the cost of living. from the date you left until the date of your death.

Examples

a. Jenny died two years after she retired. She had a pension of £15,000 a year. A lump sum of £45,000 will be paid to her nominee.

b. Patrick left the scheme when he was 40, with a pension entitlement of £5,000. He died five years later, by which time his pension entitlement had grown with inflation to £5,600. As Patrick has not received any pension payments his nominee will be paid a lump sum of £28,000.

The Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) will pay a lump sum, normally to the person or people you have nominated. Your Annual Benefit Statement (ABS) shows your nominee(s).

The lump sum will be the greater of:

  • twice your final pay less any lump sums already paid from any section of the Civil Service pension arrangements;

or

  • five times the pension you have built up (including any added pension you had bought), less any pension (but excluding any lump sum) already paid from nuvos.

For this purpose, final pay means the better of:

  • your pensionable earnings in your final year;

or

  • your highest pensionable earnings in any of the last 10 scheme years (with earlier years uprated in line with rises in the cost of living).

48. How do I name someone to receive the lump sum when I die?

You can nominate any person, including a child, and/or an organisation to receive the death benefit lump sum. The advantage of making a nomination is that we can then pay the benefit without delay.

If you do not nominate anyone, we will pay the lump sum to your personal representative.

You can add or amend your death benefit nomination in the Pension Portal or by completing a death benefit nomination form. You can download the form from the Member Forms page.

If you decide to name more than one person, you should say how much you would like each person to receive (for example 50% or half). If you don’t, the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) will pay each person an equal share.

If you name your husband, wife or civil partner and you then get divorced or your civil partnership is dissolved, your nomination form will become invalid and the lump sum will not be paid to your former husband, wife or civil partner. If you still want that person to receive the lump sum, you must provide a new nomination after the date of your divorce or dissolution to nominate them again.

Please note that if you are legally separated but not divorced, a nomination for your husband, wife or civil partner will still be valid.

If you separate from a partner to whom you are neither married nor in a civil partnership with and you had nominated them as a beneficiary, the nomination will remain valid. You will need to change or cancel your nomination, if you wish to remove the previous nominee.

It is your responsibility to keep your nomination under review and update it whenever necessary. The Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) cannot pay the lump sum to a person other than your nominee(s), though if there are good grounds for considering it is not appropriate to pay the sum to your nominee it can instead be paid to your personal representative, for example, the person responsible for sorting out your affairs after your death.

The Pension Portal and your Annual Benefit Statement (ABS) show your current nominee(s).

49. What happens if I die without having made a nomination?

The Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) will pay any lump sum that is due to the executor of your affairs after your death.

50. Does my husband, wife or civil partner get a pension?

We will pay your surviving husband, wife or civil partner a pension if you die while in service (providing you had been an active member for at least 12 months) or if you die after having left with a preserved pension or with a pension in payment.

Their pension entitlement is usually worked out as 37.5% of your pension, including any added pension you have bought for yourself and your family, and any pension bought by a transfer in from another scheme.

If you die after receiving an enhanced ill-health pension, the pension for your surviving husband, wife or civil partner will be the same as if you had died in service (see question 51).

If you have commuted part of your pension, this will not affect the pension for your husband, wife or civil partner as this will be based on your pension before you decided to commute.

If your husband, wife or civil partner is more than 12 years younger than you, then their pension will be reduced to reflect the fact that it is likely to be in payment for a longer time.

51. How are pensions for my family worked out if I die in service?

If you die in service we will enhance your pension before we work out the pension payable to your family. The enhancement will be worked out by multiplying the earned element of your nuvos pension by n and dividing that by the number of years you were contributing to nuvos. n will be 10, or the years until you would have been 65, whichever is less. However, the enhancement cannot more than double your earned pension, or take the total pension above the 75% limit (see question 19). The “earned element” of your nuvos pension is the part that you build up every year. It does not include any pension from transfers in or linked service or any added pension.

Note that if you die in service after taking partial retirement (questions 29-30) then pension for your family will not be enhanced.

Once your husband, wife or civil partner is receiving a pension, it will continue for the rest of their life, a nd it will increase every April in line with rises in the cost of living.

Examples

a. Sylvia died in service at the age of 50 after 25 years in nuvos. The pension she had built up at the time of her death was £15,000. In order to work out her civil partner’s pension, Sylvia’s pension will be enhanced by (10 x 15,000/25) = £6,000. So her civil partner Mary will get a pension as if Sylvia’s pension had been £21,000, that is, a pension of £7,875 a year (37.5% of £21,000).

b. Gordon has a pension of £10,000, but he decided to commute (give up) £1,875 of his annual pension so he could have a tax-free lump sum of £22,500. The pension he receives is £8,125 a year. When Gordon dies, his widow will get a pension of £3,750 a year (37.5% of £10,000).

c. Philip died in service at the age of 62 after 12 years in nuvos. His pension from nuvos was £12,000, but he had also bought £2,000 of added pension for himself and his family. In order to work out his widow’s pension, his nuvos pension will be enhanced by (3 x 12,000/12) = £3,000, to £15,000.

So his widow Kathryn will get a pension of £6,375 a year (37.5% of £17,000 – Philip’s enhanced pension, plus the added pension he had bought).

d. Jack is killed in an accident at the age of 25, after 4 years in nuvos. He had built up a pension of £2,000. Jack wasn’t married but he had nominated a partner who was eligible to receive his pension. Paula will get a pension of £1,500 a year (37.5% of £2,000 doubled).

19. Is there any limit to the size of my pension?

29. What is partial retirement?

52. I am not married or in a civil partnership but I have a partner. Will they receive a pension?

If neither you nor your partner is married to anyone else or in a civil partnership, we may pay your partner a pension. The Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) works this out in the same way as the pension for a husband, wife or civil partner (see question 50). Your partner will also have to provide evidence that he or she was financially dependent on you, or that you were financially interdependent, at the time of your death. For more details on this, see the booklet ‘Pensions for partners: a guide’. This booklet is available here: Nuvos Scheme Guide or you can ask the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) for a copy.

50. Does my husband, wife or civil partner get a pension?

53. Will my children get a pension?

We pay children’s pensions to your children and to any others who are financially dependent on you when you die. Pensions are paid to age 18 or, potentially, to age 23 if the child continues in full-time education or vocational training.

A pension may be payable for life to a child who is dependent due to serious disability; ask the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) for more information about this.

The Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) works out a child’s pension as 30% of your pension entitlement if we pay a pension to your surviving husband, wife, civil partner or partner, or 50% if there is no such pension payable. If you leave more than two children who qualify for a pension MyCSP will reduce each child’s pension so they each get an equal share.

Example

Julie had a pension entitlement of £8,000 a year. She died leaving a widower and three children under the age of 23. Julie’s husband received a pension of £3,000 a year and each child receives a pension of £1,600 a year (one-third of 2 x 30% x £8,000).

54. Can I arrange for someone to get a share of my pension?

Before your pension comes into payment, you may choose to give up part of your pension in exchange for additional pension for a dependant after your death. This is called “allocation”. If you are interested in this option you should contact the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP) for further information.

Allocation of your pension will not affect the way any pension for another member of your family is calculated.

Example

Peter decides to allocate part of his pension to provide a pension for his mother after his death. His pension entitlement, before allocation, is £10,000 a year, but because of the allocation he has made, he receives pension of only £8,500. He dies leaving two dependent children, but no wife or partner. Each child would receive a pension of £5,000.

55. What happens if I am divorced?

If you are divorced, or your civil partnership is dissolved, the court will take into account any pension rights, and may make either an earmarking or attachment order or a pension sharing order
over your pension benefits. You can find out more about this from the booklet “Pensions and divorce, dissolution or annulment”, which you can download here: Nuvos Scheme Guide or obtain from the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP).

If you had previously nominated your husband, wife or civil partner to receive any lump sum death benefit, that nomination will become invalid at the date of your divorce or dissolution, so you should remember to make a new nomination. You can obtain the form to do this from the Civil Service Pensions website or from the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP).

56. Can my dependant have a lump sum instead of a pension?

If the pension falls within the HMRC limits on trivial commutation, your dependant may choose to have it commuted into a lump sum. Your dependant can find out more about this from the Scheme Administrator (MyCSP).

57. Will I get a refund if I have no dependants?

You can only have a refund of your contributions if you leave with less than two years’ service (see Leaving before pension age, question 59). If you leave service or die with an entitlement to pension, then no refund is payable.

59. What options do I have if I resign after a few months?

58. What if I get married, enter a civil partnership, begin a relationship that would meet the criteria for a partner pension or have children after I’ve left?

Providing you left with an entitlement to pension, and have not since then transferred your benefits out of nuvos (see question 60), then a pension will be payable to your family on your death, on the same terms and conditions as set out in previous questions.

60. What if I resign after two or more years’ service?

Published:
6 January 2022
Last updated:
16 May 2022