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Topping up your pension

Additional Pension Contributions (APCs)

Additional Pension Contributions (APCs)

What is an APC and what is it worth?

An APC is method of buying extra annual pension in the Scheme.

The maximum amount of annual pension you can buy using an APC is £7,316 (as at 1 April 2021).
This figure will increase each year with the cost of living.


Are there any restrictions on the pension bought?

Any extra pension bought will be only for you. This means there will not be a pension for your dependants after you die from this portion of your benefits.


What options do I have to buy this extra pension?

You can choose to buy extra pension by spreading the payment over a number of complete years or by making a one-off lump sum payment. But if you are a year or less from your Normal Pension Age (NPA) or you are passed your NPA you can only pay by lump sum.


I am thinking of spreading the payment, what do I need to know?

If you choose to spread the payments, the additional contributions will be deducted straight from your pay and will get tax relief (i.e. you won’t pay tax on the extra contributions). You will earn a portion of the extra pension you are buying each time you make a payment.

If you retire due to ill-health with an enhanced pension, you will be awarded the full extra pension even if you have not finished paying for it.


I want to make a one-off payment to buy extra pension, what do I need to know?

You can do this in one of two ways. You can choose to pay a one-off sum from your wages and will get tax relief (i.e. you won’t pay tax on the extra contributions).

Or, you can choose to pay South Yorkshire Pensions Authority direct. If you choose to do this, you will have to claim the tax back using a Self-Assessment Tax Return.

If you buy your extra pension by lump sum you will be credited with it straight away.


Are there any limits on how much tax relief I can claim?

Yes. You can only claim tax relief up to 100% of your taxable earnings or, if more, £3,600. These figures will include your normal contributions to the Scheme.


Do I have to pay for it all myself?

Your employer may choose to contribute to the amount of extra pension to be bought. This is known as a Shared Cost Additional Pension Contribution (SCAPC) arrangement. It is completely up to your employer and not guaranteed, so you should ask them what their policy is.


What happens to my extra pension if I retire early?

If you voluntarily retire early (i.e. not due to redundancy or ill-health) the extra pension you buy will be reduced because it will be in payment for longer. This is the same for all your pension benefits.


What happens if I retire late?

If you retire after your Normal Pension Age (NPA), the extra pension you have bought will increase, just like the rest of your pension benefits.


Why do I need a Medical Report?

If you retire early due to ill-health on an enhanced basis your extra pension would be paid in full, even if you have not finished paying for it. Because of this, we need to know that you are unlikely to need to retire early due to ill-health in the foreseeable future, as it will carry a cost to the scheme.


Buying Extra Pension – The Process

If you want to buy extra pensiIf you want to buy extra pension:

  1. Use the LGPS Online Calculator opens in new window to get a quote
  2. You can choose to set a certain amount of pension to be bought, or a certain level of contributions.
  3. Apply for the APC
  4. If you decide to go ahead with the APC, you can apply using the section at the bottom of the LGPS Online Calculator. At SYPA we accept the digital signature so you can use the “sign and download application” facility.
  5. Get a Medical Declaration
  6. Download and print the Medical Declaration Form from the LGPS Online calculator web page. You will need to get a medical practitioner (i.e. a GP etc) to complete the form. You will have to pay any costs involved in getting the Medical Declaration Form completed by a doctor.
  7. Send the Application and Medical Declaration to SYPA
  8. You will need to send the Application and written statement to SYPA. You can find our contact details at the bottom of this page.
Other things you need to know

If you are still making up your mind and you pass a birthday, you will have to submit a new application.

You can find the full terms and conditions for buying lost pension due to absence on the back of the application form.

on:
  1. Use the LGPS Online Calculator to get a quote
  2. You can choose to set a certain amount of pension to be bought, or a certain level of contributions.
  3. Apply for the APC
  4. If you decide to go ahead with the APC, you can apply using the section at the bottom of the LGPS Online Calculator. At SYPA we accept the digital signature so you can use the “sign and download application” facility.
  5. Get a Medical Declaration
  6. Download and print the Medical Declaration Form from the LGPS Online calculator web page. You will need to get a medical practitioner (i.e. a GP etc) to complete the form. You will have to pay any costs involved in getting the Medical Declaration Form completed by a doctor.
  7. Send the Application and Medical Declaration to SYPA
  8. You will need to send the Application and written statement to SYPA. You can find our contact details at the bottom of this page.
Other things you need to know

If you are still making up your mind and you pass a birthday, you will have to submit a new application.

You can find the full terms and conditions for buying lost pension due to absence on the back of the application form.