FAQs


How do I join?

If you are an eligible employee you will be contractually enrolled into the RBP at the start of your employment.

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What if I previously opted out?
If you previously opted out and now wish to re-join, membership is at the discretion of the Trustees. Please contact the pensions department for an application form.  You will need to complete a medical declaration before your application can be considered.

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What does it cost?
You pay a contribution of 9% of your salary, but get tax relief at your highest rate and also pay lower national insurance contributions, so the net cost to you is much less than this.  The average net cost is approximately 5%.  The University pays an employer contribution of 19% and an annual cash payment (from 2009) of £823,000.

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Can I opt out?
Yes, you can opt out as membership is not compulsory. If you have less than two years in the scheme when you opt out you may be entitled to a refund of your contributions, minus a deduction for tax and national insurance.  You must give at least one month notice of withdrawal.

Remember, if you are no longer a scheme member you will not be covered for the death in service lump sum or dependent’s pension benefits.

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What are AVCs?
AVCs are additional voluntary contributions and you can pay them either as a lump sum or as a monthly payment. Paying AVCs will build up a fund at retirement which can be used to provide extra pension or increase your tax free lump sum. For more information on AVCs contact the pensions department.

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Can I transfer benefits from a previous pension scheme?
Yes, the RBP can usually accept transfers from most approved pension arrangements, as long as the transfer value from the previous scheme is more than £5000. Your fund will be used to buy extra pension benefits in the RBP. To investigate a transfer, please contact the pensions department.

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What happens if I leave the University?
We will calculate the benefits you have built up in the scheme up to your leaving date. If you have less than two years’ membership you will have the option of leaving your pension benefits in the RBP, a transfer value, or a refund of your contributions. If you have over two years’ membership, we will issue you with a deferred benefit statement or you can investigate a transfer to a new pension scheme.

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What if I have unpaid maternity leave?
Your maternity leave will count as pensionable service in full up to week 40.  You will not accrue any benefits in respect of your maternity leave beyond week 40.

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Can I retire early?
The normal pension age of the Plan is age 65. You may apply to retire early from age 55 but an actuarial reduction will apply to any benefits paid before the normal pension age.

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Will my pension increase?
Pensions in payment in excess of any guaranteed minimum pension (GMP) increase each April by the rate of increase in the Retail Prices Index (RPI), as measured by the September RPI figure. Historical rates of increase are as follows:

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How long will my pension be paid for?
Your pension is payable for your lifetime, and on your death if you have a spouse or civil partner a proportion of your pension will continue to be payable.

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Who should I contact if I have a query?
Please contact the Pensions office.

 

 

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