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When working in the UK and planning for your future retirement there are three main types of pension you may wish to consider:

  • Occupational pensions such as the NHS Pension Scheme
  • State pensions
  • Personal pensions

NHS Pension Schemes

Information about pension membership is enclosed with your contract.

Any new starters are automatically opted into the NHS Pension scheme unless they wish to opt out, if so they will need provide Payroll with an opt out form (SD502) which they can get from the NHS Pension website.

Please read this information carefully as it will be assumed you will be a member of the scheme, and contributions will be deducted automatically, unless you clearly indicate on the form that you wish to opt out.

For further information please see the NHS Pension Website.

State Pension Scheme

The State Pension is a regular payment you can receive when you reach State Pension age. It is based on your National Insurance contributions (NICs) and how much you get varies.

Basic State Pension

Anyone who has enough qualifying years from their NICs record is entitled to some basic State Pension. Find out more about qualifying for the basic State Pension  and how much you can get. Or use the State Pension profiler  to estimate how much basic State Pension you may have built up and when you can claim it.

State Pension Age

The State Pension age is the earliest age you can get your State Pension and is based on your date of birth.

Claiming State Pension in another country

If you have paid NICs in the UK you may be able to claim the state pension even if you no longer live in the UK. However, the amount will depend on the number of qualifying years of NICs you have made, and the country in which you live.

The International Pension Centre  will be able to offer assistance.

Personal Pensions

Personal pensions are available from banks, building societies and life insurance companies who will invest your savings on your behalf.

You can save as much as you want into a personal pension. You will get tax relief on the amount you put in up to the annual allowance. Understanding personal pensions  provides further information.