The Civil Service Pensions arrangements don’t just provide pension benefits. In certain circumstances, they also provide benefits after your death for your loved ones.  

Some of the other benefits a Civil Service pension offers your loved ones and dependants include:  

  • A spouse/partner/civil partner’s pension 
  • A death benefit lump sum 
  • A children's pension 
  • A Widow’s or Widower’s (WPS) refund 
  • Life assurance cover 
  • Support from our trusted charity partners 

Benefits Overview

Spouse/partner/civil partner’s pension

Your spouse or civil partner may get a pension when you die. The amount that they may be entitled to will depend upon: 

  • The amount of your pension that you have built up. The sum that they receive as a pension will be a percentage of what you have built up
  • Which pension scheme you’re in. The exact percentage they may receive varies depending on the specific scheme and the amount you have paid into it.   

Find out more in your scheme guide.    

If you’re not married or in a civil partnership  

If you are in a long term, committed relationship, your partner may receive benefits if you die. Declared partners may get a pension just like a spouse or civil partner. To declare your partner to us:  

  • Inform us about your partner using the Partner Declaration form
  • Don’t forget to tell us if your partner’s details change. 

Children’s Pension

There may be a pension for children under 18 (17 if you're in classic) or 23 if they're in full-time education or vocational training. Children with a disability whose health will prevent them from working may be able to receive the pension for life.    

How much pension each child gets will depend on which scheme you’re in, how many children’s pensions are payable and whether there’s also a pension payable to your spouse, civil partner or declared partner.  Learn more about Children’s pensions  

Find out more in your scheme guide.  


A Civil Service pension allows you to nominate a beneficiary (including charities) to receive a tax-free lump sum in the event of your death. The amount that you can leave and the number of beneficiaries depend upon the pension scheme that you are on:  

Classic pension scheme 

  • You can only nominate one person or organisation. 

Member of the other schemes 

  • You can choose as many nominees as you want.  
  • You can also choose how to split the lump sum between them.   

Log in to the Pension Portal or complete a Death Benefit Nomination form to confirm who you want to be considered to receive a lump sum. This could be a family member, a friend, a charity, or any other organisation or business.  

If you die while still in service and are not claiming any of your pension benefits, the lump sum is at least two years’ pay, before tax.  

The lump-sum is worked out differently if you die after:

  • leaving 
  • retiring 
  • partially retiring; or  
  • taking other pension benefits   

Find out more in your scheme guide.  

8 December 2021
Last updated:
18 October 2023