During any period of relevant child related leave the pensionable pay figure used to work out your pension is your assumed pensionable pay. Using your assumed pensionable pay, rather than the amount of pensionable pay you actually receive when on relevant child related leave, means that you will continue to build up a pension in the section of the LGPS you are in, as if you were working normally and receiving pay.
You will continue to pay your basic LGPS contributions on any pay that you receive while you are off on relevant child related leave.
However, any period of unpaid additional maternity, paternity or adoption leave will not count for pension purposes unless you elect to pay Additional Pension Contributions (APCs) to purchase the amount of pension lost during that period of unpaid absence.
The amount of pension lost is calculated as the appropriate fraction of your assumed pensionable pay for that period of absence (i.e. 1/49th of your assumed pensionable pay if you were in the main section of the scheme or 1/98th if you were in the 50/50 section).
If you wish to purchase the amount of lost pension and make the election within 30 days of returning to work then the cost of the APC is split between you and your employer. You will pay one-third of the cost and your employer will pay the rest. This is known as a Shared Cost Additional Pension Contract (SCAPC). You can pay these additional contributions in a one-off lump sum or through regular payments from your wages.
The maximum period of absence you can elect to buy back by a SCAPC is a period of 3 years.
If you have membership of the LGPS before 1 April 2014 you will have built up benefits in the final salary scheme. If you choose to pay for the lost pension in the scheme the amount you pay will go towards covering the protections associated with the pre 1 April 2014 membership.
If you have Keep in Touch (KIT) day(s) during a period of unpaid additional maternity, paternity or adoption leave you will build up a pension (based on the section of the scheme you are in) for the day(s) you are paid.
To make an election you will need to:
Know the amount of pay you lost due to absence. Your employer should provide this figure.
Decide how long you wish to pay over, or whether this will be by a one off lump sum.
Get a quote from the LGPS modeller at – Additional Pension Contributions – using the ‘Buy lost pension’ option.
Print off a copy of application form and return to your employer, this must be received within 30 days of your return to work. It is advisable to check that the application has been actioned, by your employer.
For further information please read our factsheet – Maternity/Adoption Leave (PDF 153KB)