Transferring pension rights into the LGPS

In this section we look at transferring previous pension rights into the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS). 

Where pension terms are used an explanation appears in the pension terms section

You may be able to transfer pension rights into the LGPS from:

  • a previous LGPS Fund, or
  • a previous employer's pension scheme, or
  • a self-employed pension plan, or
  • a ‘buy-out’ policy, or
  • a personal pension plan, or
  • a stakeholder pension scheme, or
  • an Additional Voluntary Contribution (AVC) arrangement  

 

including, in some cases, from an overseas pension scheme.

You cannot transfer a pension credit into the LGPS. A pension credit is a share of an ex-spouse's or ex-civil partner's pension benefits, as awarded by a Court under a Pension Sharing Order, or by a qualifying agreement in Scotland, following a divorce or a dissolution of a civil partnership.

 

If you have previous LGPS pension rights


If you re-join the LGPS, you can normally transfer your previous LGPS pension rights to your new membership, enabling you to enjoy benefits based upon your entire membership and linked to your final pay in your new job. 

They will not be transferred automatically. You only have 12 months from re-joining the LGPS to opt to transfer your previous LGPS pension rights, unless your employer allows you longer. This is an employer discretion; you can ask your employer what their policy is on this matter. 

Transferred membership from the LGPS in England or Wales will normally count on a day for day basis, but transferred membership from the LGPS in Scotland or Northern Ireland may not count on a day for day basis. 

If your new job is less well paid, you will need to decide whether it may be better not to join the benefits together. 

If you wish to transfer your previous LGPS pension rights you should contact your Pension Fund administrator as soon as possible to find out about this and about the matters you will need to consider in making your decision.

Pension rights built up as a councillor or mayor cannot be joined with rights built up as an employee and vice versa.

 

If you have pension rights in a non– LGPS arrangement


If you have paid into a non-LGPS pension arrangement, you may be able to transfer your previous pension rights into the LGPS.

You have only 12 months from joining the LGPS to opt to transfer your previous pension rights, unless your employer allows you longer. This is an employer discretion; you can ask your employer what their policy is on this matter. 

If you opt to transfer pension rights from a non-LGPS arrangement then a