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Membership and contributions

The Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) is a statutory, funded pension scheme. As such it is very secure because its benefits are guaranteed and set out in law.

Membership is automatic for most eligible employees including apprentices.

To join the LGPS you need to:

  • be under age 75 and
  • work for an employer that offers membership of the scheme.

Automatic entry into the scheme

Contracts of over 3 months

You are automatically entered into the scheme.

Contracts of less than 3 months

You are not automatically entered into the scheme but you can opt in. Complete an opt in form (PDF, 96.4 KB) to opt in to the scheme. You will become a member of the scheme from the beginning of the next pay period following your application to join.

Casual employees who have no 'mutuality of obligation', i.e. the employer is not obliged to offer work and the employee is not obliged to accept work, are deemed to be employed only on the days they actually work. Therefore they are unlikely to work 3 months consecutively and will be regarded as having a contract of less than 3 months.

If you have a contract of less than 3 months which is extended you will automatically be brought into the scheme from the date your contract is extended.

Forms to complete when you join

When you join the scheme your employer should ask you to complete a Joiner Pack (PDF, 335.7 KB). It contains 2 forms:-

1.Personal Details Declaration form. You provide your personal details and you can also request information to decide if you wish to transfer previous pension rights into the scheme.
2.Expression of wish for payment of death grant form. You provide details of who you nominate to receive the lump sum death grant.

Checking you are in the scheme

Check your payslip to see if you are paying into the scheme. Your employer will inform us that you have joined the scheme. We will create your pension record and send you notification of your membership in the scheme.

Notification of your pension

Every year an Annual Benefit Illustration is sent to your home address by 31 August. Find out about annual benefit illustrations

Opting out

You can opt out of the scheme at any time. To opt out of the scheme, complete an opt out form (PDF, 201.4 KB). If you are opting out because you are suffering financial hardship you may wish to consider the 50/50 section of the scheme rather than opting out altogether. Find out about the 50/50 section

Contributions

The amount of contributions you pay varies between 5.5% and 12.5%. Find out about contributions

Employer contributions

Your employer pays into the scheme too. Every 3 years an independent review is undertaken to calculate how much your employer should contribute to the scheme. Find out what your employer pays

Extra contributions

You can pay extra contributions to increase your pension. You can not pay a lump sum into the pension scheme but there are other options to increase your pension. Find out about increasing benefits

Transferring in previous pension

You may be able to transfer in your previous pension rights. You only have 12 months from joining the scheme to request to do this. Find out about transferring in previous pension rights

Transferring out your pension to another pension arrangement

You may be able to transfer your Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) pension rights to other types of pension arrangements. You must have already stopped paying into the LGPS to do this. Find out about transferring out your LGPS benefits

Maximum contribution age in the scheme

You can pay contributions into the scheme up to the age of 75.