Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

 

What happened to the AVC payments I made when I was a final salary member?

If you paid AVCs into the Plan when you were in the final salary section (pre 28 February 2013) they are still held with Standard Life in a separate pot to your current Defined Contribution (DC) benefits. When you put your final salary benefits into payment you can take your AVCs as part of these benefits.

 

When can I retire?

The minimum retirement age is currently 55. If you are an ex-final salary member, you have a protected minimum retirement age of 50. For more information on retirement ages and potentials restrictions on how you take your benefits please click here.

 

Can I change how my pension is invested?

Yes, you can. In addition to the default choice there are other lifestyle options and also selfstyle options where you can choose your own funds. It is worth researching all the choices before making any changes.

 

How are my pension savings protected?

There are a number of measures in place that aim to keep your pension savings safe. The Trustee has reviewed the protection available across all the funds in the Plan and believes they all provide an appropriate level of security.

 

All funds are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). For more information on the FSCS, please visit www.fscs.org.uk

 

Am I affected by the recent Court ruling on Guaranteed Minimum Pensions (GMP)?

GMP is relevant only for DB section Plan members who were in service between 17 May 1990 and 5 April 1997. 

 

In October 2018 the High Court ruled that inequalities in how GMPs have been calculated must be addressed by all UK pension schemes. As a result of this ruling, the benefits for some members of the Plan may require an upwards adjustment. No Plan pension will be reduced as a result of this exercise.

 

There is however still considerable uncertainty about how pension schemes should in practice address this inequality. This situation is not unique to members of the Plan; the High Court judgement is expected to all pension arrangements across the UK which contain GMPs.

 

Should it be established at some point in the future that your benefits in the Plan are due an adjustment, you will be contacted to explain what options you have in relation to this.