An update on Covid-19

Please be assured that we have taken all necessary steps to ensure that we will still be able to pay and process members’ pensions during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Have you registered for our secure online portal?

It’s often quicker and easier to update your details and check your pension online, through our secure portal.

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Pensioners and deferred members of the Scottish & Newcastle Pension Plan are invited to apply to join the Trustee Board.

 
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FAQs

Here are some answers to common questions about the Scottish & Newcastle Pension Plan and retirement planning in general.

If you have a question that isn’t answered here, please get in touch with the Plan administrator, Capita, on 0345 600 2086 or email snpensions@capita.co.uk.

The earliest age you can retire is age 55, subject to Trustee approval. However, the value of the pension you have built up for any service to 5 April 1997 (pre-1997 pension) must be at least equal to your Guaranteed Minimum Pension (GMP); if it isn’t, then you may not be able to retire early. You will be advised if this applies to you. If you retire early, your pension may be reduced to take into account the fact that it will be paid for longer.

Please contact the Plan administrator, Capita, who will be able to provide you with a retirement quotation and all the forms you will need to apply. Capita can be contacted by email at snpensions@capita.co.uk or by phone on 0345 600 2086 (+44 114 273 7331 if calling from overseas).

If you are in poor health, it may be possible for you to take your pension early without a reduction being applied (and before age 55). To determine whether you are eligible for ill-health retirement, your GP will be asked to provide a report which will be reviewed by an independent GP against the criteria for ill health. If you would like to look into the possibility of taking ill-health retirement, please call the Plan administrator, Capita, on 0345 600 2086 (+44 114 273 7331 if calling from overseas) and a member of the administration team will be able to assist. If you are still employed by HEINEKEN UK then you need to contact your HR Advisor at HRAdvisor@heineken.co.uk.

This information is available online under ‘retirement options’, once you have completed the registration process for the online portal. You can see this each time you log in. If you click on ‘retirement illustrator’, you will see your pension figures at your Normal Retirement Age (NRA).

You can choose a different date by clicking on the button in the assumptions section. Please note, if your NRA or chosen retirement date is not in the current calendar year, your pension at date of leaving will only have been increased to last year. This is because it is impossible to predict future increases. However, full increases will be applied when you actually retire. Please note, if you have paid Additional Voluntary Contributions into the Plan, these won’t be included in the retirement figures online.

For some members, this information is not available online; a message will appear on the page and the administration team at Capita will have to perform a manual calculation. Please email snpensions@capita.co.uk from the email address you used to register with Capita or call them on 0345 600 2086 (+44 114 273 7331 if calling from overseas) to request this calculation.

Please note that if we have a current address on our records, the Plan administrator, Capita, will write out to you approximately four months before your NRA.

Your deferred pension (the pension calculated when you left the company/the Plan closed) will receive statutory increases (called ‘revaluation’) based on the number of complete years between when you left the Plan and your date of retirement. The increased pension may be adjusted by a factor provided by the Plan’s actuary to take into account early or late payment.

This information is available online under ‘retirement options’ once you have registered for the online portal. Broadly speaking, you will have the option to receive a full pension or alternatively you can take a tax-free Pension Commencement Lump Sum (PCLS) and a smaller pension. The PCLS is worked out using commutation factors that are based on your age at date of retirement. Your pension must be greater than your Guaranteed Minimum Pension (GMP) in order for you to receive a PCLS.

If you only have a small pension at retirement, it may be possible for you to take your entire pension as a one-off lump sum (known as Trivial Commutation or Small Lump Sum depending on the capital value of your benefits). This is subject to meeting criteria set out by the HM Revenue & Customs. If you are eligible for this option, this will be included in your retirement forms.

You should note that any pension paid will be subject to taxation under the PAYE system.

When you decide to take your pension, you will receive a retirement pack which will include forms for you to complete.

The Plan administrator, Capita, is required to verify your identity, and if you live in the UK they will use an electronic identity verification tool. The system performs a series of checks across multiple information sources, such as the electoral roll, to confirm and verify the identity of members.

Before setting up your pension, Capita will need to see the following:

  • A completed Retirement Option form (including the Recycling Declaration if you are taking a Pension Commencement Lump Sum)
  • A completed Trivial Commutation form (if this option is available to you and you opt to take this)
  • A Retirement Bank Mandate/Overseas Bank Mandate, as applicable. This form allows you to tell us your nominated bank account for pension payments
  • A completed Lifetime Allowance form
  • An original birth certificate if you live overseas or if Capita has been unable to verify your identity using the electronic identity verification tool
  • A Marital Status Declaration form and, if applicable your original marriage certificate and spouse’s birth certificate. (Capita will ask for these certificates at retirement so that in the event of your death, they do not need to trouble your spouse for these.)

Your pension will be paid in advance, every four weeks into your nominated bank account. Where possible, your first pension instalment will be paid on the next pension payment date after your retirement date.

Once in payment, your pension will be reviewed annually on 1 November and increased in accordance with the Plan Rules. Different increases are applied to pension earned before 6 April 1997 and pension earned after 6 April 1997. If you have passed your Guaranteed Minimum Pension (GMP) age, then the increases to the GMP element of your pension will be decided by the Government. Every element of pension has a specific increase definition, so you will receive a letter each year that provides a breakdown of your pension and confirms the percentage of increase that has been awarded to each element.

Your pension will be paid on a four-weekly basis (lunar) or a monthly basis, depending on when your pension went into payment. You will receive a payslip when your pension is first set up but you will then only receive one if your pension changes by more than £1 in any pay period, or when P60s are issued. If you register for the online portal, you will be able to view your payslips online at any time.

Your pension is payable under the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) rules. Income tax will be calculated, initially on a Month 1 (Emergency Code) basis. HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) will be informed of your retirement. If any change is made to your tax code, the Plan administrator, Capita, will adjust your tax position accordingly. This is usually within the first two months of your first pension payment.

If you retire before your State Pension Age (SPA), depending on your membership category in the Plan, you may receive an element of pension that is known as a supplementary pension (or ‘bridging pension’). The supplementary pension is only payable until your SPA. When you reach your SPA, the supplementary element of your pension will cease to be payable and, therefore, your pension will decrease. If the Government subsequently changes the SPA, the date your Supplementary Pension is paid to will not change. Your retirement estimate will confirm the amount of supplementary pension included in your pension and the date this will cease.

If you choose to defer payment of your pension until after your NRA, your pension will be increased and a factor supplied by the Plan’s actuary will be applied. See the question ‘How can I get an estimate of my pension at my Normal Retirement Age?’ for more details.

If you only have a small pension at retirement, it may be possible for you to take your entire pension as a one-off lump sum (known as Trivial Commutation or Small Lump Sum, depending on the capital value of your benefits). This is subject to meeting criteria set out by the HM Revenue & Customs: the capital value of all your pension benefits cannot exceed £30,000 for a Trivial Commutation or the capital of your Plan benefits must be less than £10,000 for a Small Lump Sum. If you are eligible for either of these options, this will be included in your retirement forms. One quarter (25%) of the Trivial Commutation/Small Lump Sum will be paid tax free and the remaining 75% will be subject to income tax under the PAYE procedures.

Please note, if your pension includes a Guaranteed Minimum Pension element which was built up between 17 May 1990 and 5 April 1997, then the Plan is currently unable to offer Trivial Commutation or Small Lump Sums. This is due to a High Court judgment published in October 2018 which ruled that pension schemes are required to equalise pension benefits between men and women for the effect of GMPs built up between these dates. Until such time as more clarity and guidance has been provided, the Plan administrator, Capita, is unfortunately unable to process these payments.

This option is not available under the Plan. The Plan does not offer income drawdown and, therefore, your pension must be taken at the same time as your Pension Commencement Lump Sum. You may however wish to investigate the possibility of taking a transfer of your pension out of the Plan to another approved arrangement that offers this facility. See the question ‘How can I request a transfer value?’ in the transfer out section.

If you have a question about tax, please contact the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) office below:

HM Revenue & Customs
PAYE
PO Box 1970
Liverpool L75 1WX
Telephone number: 0300 200 3300
PAYE reference number: 120/MA83247

When your pension is set up, the Plan administrator, Capita, will include this information in your retirement confirmation letter.

This information is available online, under ‘quote options’, once you have completed the registration process for the online portal.

You can see this information each time you log in. Please note, if you paid Additional Voluntary Contributions into the Plan, these won’t be included in the transfer figures online.

For some members, this information is not available online; a message will appear on the page and the administration team at Capita will have to perform a manual calculation. Please email snpensions@capita.co.uk from the email address you used to register with Capita or call them on 0345 600 2086 (+44 114 273 7331 if calling from overseas) to request this calculation.

The value shown online is not guaranteed. If you want to transfer out, then please contact the Plan administrator, Capita, to request a guaranteed transfer value. Only one guaranteed transfer value can be provided free of charge in any 12-month period, so please only ask if you are certain you wish to transfer out. Your guaranteed transfer value is valid for a period of three months from the calculation date.

If you decide to transfer your benefits to an alternative pension arrangement, the Plan administrator, Capita, must receive the following paperwork before the transfer can take place:

  • Member Discharge form
  • Receiving Scheme Information form (from the alternative scheme)
  • If your transfer value is greater than £30,000, a statement in writing from an FCA-authorised independent adviser, along with one of the following:
    - Trust Based Occupational Scheme form
    - Personal/Stakeholder Pension Scheme form
    - Section 32 Buy Out/Annuity Policy form

Capita is required to verify your identity, and if you live in the UK they will use an electronic identity verification tool. The system performs a series of checks across multiple information sources, such as the electoral roll, to confirm and verify the identity of members.

If you live overseas or Capita has been unable to verify your identity using the electronic identity verification tool, they will also require your original birth certificate.

If you decide to transfer your benefits to a Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (ROPS), then a tax charge (known as the ‘overseas transfer charge’ and equal to 25% of the transfer value) will be deducted from the transfer payment unless at least one of the following conditions applies:

  • You are resident in the same country in which the ROPS is established
  • The ROPS is in one European Economic Area (EEA) country and you are resident in another EEA country
  • The ROPS is an occupational pension scheme sponsored by your employer, an overseas public service pension scheme, or a pension scheme established by an international organisation (with an employment link between the scheme and you).

Even where the transfer is paid free of tax, an overseas transfer charge may arise later if your circumstances subsequently change and you no longer qualify for one of the exemptions. If you are unsure whether a proposed ROPS transfer would meet these conditions, or if you need more information on these rules, then it is recommend that you seek independent financial advice.

You are entitled to one free statutory Cash Equivalent Transfer Value (CETV) a year. If you require another within a 12-month period, there will be a charge payable; this is currently £250 plus VAT. Please note that this will be a non-statutory CETV.

You are not entitled to a statutory CETV. However, this may be provided at the discretion of the Trustee but there will be a charge of a minimum of £250 plus VAT.

Yes, the whole Plan benefit must be transferred out.

Yes, if your transfer value is over £30,000, you will need to have taken impartial advice from a financial adviser who is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The Plan administrator, Capita, will ask for proof that you have taken advice; without it they cannot pay the transfer.

Chances are you can’t. You should get proper independent financial advice to help you understand the risks of transferring. It is the responsibility of your new scheme to tell you what benefits you will be provided with once you transfer. Even if you are transferring to another defined benefit arrangement, the benefits are likely to be different so it is important that you understand what will change and what impact that may have on the benefits payable both at retirement and in the event of your death.

Depending on which section you are in, benefits may include a lump sum.

The amount of pension payable to a spouse/civil partner (or dependent partner who is entitled to a pension) is also determined by your membership section. For most sections of the Plan, this is roughly half of your pension at date of leaving the Plan plus statutory increases (called ‘revaluation’) to date of death.

If you are in the Pension Builder Section, and you were never in the Final Salary Section, a lump sum is paid, equal to five times your deferred pension at date of leaving the Plan plus revaluation calculated to date of death. In this case, no spouse’s/civil partner’s pension is paid, although some or all of the lump sum may be used to purchase a dependant’s pension, at the discretion of the Trustee.

If you were a member of both the Final Salary Section and the Pension Builder Section, then your benefits will be a combination of the above. You should contact Capita for a quotation.

If you die within five years of retirement, a lump sum equal to the balance of five years’ pension payments will be due to your next of kin. The amount of pension payable to a spouse/civil partner (or dependent partner who is entitled to a pension) is determined by your membership section. However, this is roughly half of your pension at date of death, including any pension given up at retirement for a lump sum, but see also read the question ‘What benefits will be paid if I die before I retire?

If you are in the Pension Builder Section only, a spouse/civil partner pension is only payable if you chose this as an option when you retired.

You can update your nomination by completing an Expression of Wish online. Once you have registered for the online portal and logged in, please go to the personal details section and select ‘change these details’. This information will be held on your record and will supersede any forms you have previously completed. Alternatively, you can print an Expression of Wish form to complete and return to the Plan administrator. Please note, if you’ve been in receipt of a pension from the Plan for more than five years, no lump sum is payable on your death.

The Plan administrator, Capita, will require the following information from your next of kin:

  • Your original death certificate
  • Details of Estate form
  • Beneficiaries Application form (if there is a spouse/civil partner/dependant claiming a pension)
  • Original marriage/civil partnership certificates (if applicable)
  • Original birth certificate of spouse/civil partner/dependant (if applicable)
  • Bank Mandate form
  • Details of any children

Capita will try to request all this information from you when you retire. However, there may be instances where it is necessary to contact your next of kin for further details.

You are entitled to the full pension instalment for the payment period in which your date of death falls, but if any payments are made thereafter, the Trustee will need to reclaim these overpaid amounts in full from your estate. A letter will be sent to your next of kin advising how the overpayment can be made.

The commencement date for your dependant’s pension is the day after your date of death. However, the Plan administrator, Capita, will not be able to start making payments until all the information required has been received (see ‘What information will my next of kin need to provide in the event of my death?) Their pension will be paid in advance, every four weeks, into their nominated bank account. The first pension instalment will be paid on the next pension payment date after all the relevant information has been received.

The payment of a pension to a dependent partner is subject to Trustee approval and evidence of financial dependency will need to be provided. A questionnaire will be sent to your partner for completion; here is a list of the types of things the Plan administrator, Capita, would require:

  • Details of income of both you and your partner
  • Joint mortgage/rental agreement
  • Joint utility bills
  • Joint loans/credit agreements
  • Bank statements showing payments made by you to your partner

It is important that all relevant information is provided with the completed questionnaire to try and avoid any delays and requests for further evidence.

When the Plan administrator, Capita, has been notified that you require information for a divorce, the following information will be sent to you:

  • The Plan’s divorce policy statement
  • Schedule of Charges
  • An invoice if you are not entitled to a free Cash Equivalent Transfer Value (CETV)

If you are in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, Capita will arrange for a CETV to be calculated. This may have to be done by the Plan actuary (e.g. if you are already in receipt of your pension). If you are in Scotland, your pension must be valued on the ‘date of separation’ and only the value that has been built up during your marriage or civil partnership is taken into account.

You are entitled to one free statutory Cash Equivalent Transfer Value (CETV) a year (either for transfer out or divorce). If you require another within a 12-month period, there will be a charge payable, usually £250 plus VAT.

Before a pension sharing order (PSO) can be implemented, the following is required:

  • Final Consent Order or Financial Remedy Order and Pension Sharing Annex (Form P1) (or Minute of Agreement or Court Order for divorces under Scottish Law), stamped and dated by the court
  • Decree Absolute or Dissolution Order (or extract of the Decree of Divorce, Decree of Dissolution of Civil Partnership or Declarator of Nullity for divorces under Scottish Law)
  • Charges payable by both parties or in the proportion specified in the court order
  • Information about the ex-spouse/civil partner
    - All the names by which he/she has been known
    - Date of birth
    - Address
    - National Insurance number
  • The full name and address of the qualifying arrangement(s) to which the credit is to be transferred
  • The membership or policy number in that arrangement (if known)
  • Contact details of the administrator responsible for the receiving arrangement

When your PSO was implemented, your pension was reduced according to the terms of the order and a letter was sent to confirm this. Your deferred pension (the pension calculated when you left the company/the Plan closed) will receive statutory increases (called ‘revaluation’) based on the number of complete years between when you left the Plan and the date we are calculating your benefits to. The amount your pension needs to be reduced by as a result of the PSO will be revalued between the implementation date of the PSO and the date of calculation of your benefits and this will be deducted from your total revalued pension at date of calculation.

The Plan is closed to future accrual and, therefore, it is not permitted to pay further contributions to your AVC policy.

Yes, you can transfer your AVCs to an alternative provider. If you wish to investigate this option, please email snpensions@capita.co.uk from the email address you used to register with Capita or call them on 0345 600 2086 (+44 114 273 7331 if calling from overseas) to request this calculation.

No, you are able to transfer your AVC policy only and leave your main benefits in the Plan.

When you retire, you must also take your AVCs. The following options are available:

  • Transfer your AVC fund value into the Plan and use this for additional pension and/or Pension Commencement Lump Sum
  • Open Market Option – use your AVCs to secure a pension outside of the Plan
  • Transfer out – transfer your AVCs to another pension arrangement.

If your AVC policy is held with Prudential, you can download the AVC switch form if you want to change your AVC investments. There is also an AVC factsheet, which lists all of the funds available with Prudential.

If your AVC policy is held with a provider other than Prudential, please email snpensions@capita.co.uk from your registered email address or call Capita on 0345 600 2086 (+44 114 273 7331 if calling from overseas) to request further information.

A supplementary pension is a temporary pension that is paid to bridge the gap in your income between your retirement date and your State Pension Age (as defined in the Trust Deed and Rules of the Plan).

The Plan administrator, Capita, will write to you in the month the supplementary pension is due to stop, to confirm the adjustment that will be made to your pension and the total amount of pension you will receive going forward.

The supplementary pension is only applicable to certain categories of membership; you will usually have been told when you left the Plan if it applies to you. The amount of supplementary pension calculated at date of leaving will have been shown on your deferred benefit statement.

If you are a deferred member, your supplementary pension will be shown on the retirement illustrator and the deferred benefits pages. If you are a pensioner, it is shown on your payslip as ‘Bridging Pension’.

Your supplementary pension will stop being paid from the pay period after you reach your State Pension Age, as defined in the Trust Deed and Rules of the Plan, which is as follows:

Any person born between 6th December 1953 and 5th October 1954: age 65

6th December 1953 to 5th January 1954: 6th March 2019
6th January 1954 to 5th February 1954: 6th May 2019
6th February 1954 to 5th March 1954: 6th July 2019
6th March 1954 to 5th April 1954: 6th September 2019
6th April 1954 to 5th May 1954: 6th November 2019
6th May 1954 to 5th June 1954: 6th January 2020
6th June 1954 to 5th July 1954: 6th March 2020
6th May 1954 to 5th June 1954: 6th January 2020
6th July 1954 to 5th August 1954: 6th May 2020
6th August 1954 to 5th September 1954: 6th July 2020
6th September 1954 to 5th October 1954: 6th September 2020

Any person born after 5th October 1954 but before 6th April 1960: age 66
Any person born between 6th April 1960 and 5th March 1961:

6th April 1960 to 5th May 1960 Age 66 years and 1 month
6th May 1960 to 5th June 1960 Age 66 years and 2 months
6th June 1960 to 5th July 1960 Age 66 years and 3 months
6th July 1960 to 5th August 1960 Age 66 years and 4 months
6th August 1960 to 5th September 1960 Age 66 years and 5 months
6th September 1960 to 5th October 1960 Age 66 years and 6 months
6th October 1960 to 5th November 1960 Age 66 years and 7 months
6th November 1960 to 5th December 1960 Age 66 years and 8 months
6th December 1960 to 5th January 1961 Age 66 years and 9 months
6th January 1961 to 5th February 1961 Age 66 years and 10 months
6th February 1961 to 5th March 1961 Age 66 years and 11 months

A person born after 5th March 1961 but before 6th April 1977: age 67
Any person born between 6th April 1977 and 5th April 1978:
6th April 1977 to 5th May 1977: 6th May 2044
6th May 1977 to 5th June 1977: 6th July 2044
6th June 1977 to 5th July 1977: 6th September 2044
6th July 1977 to 5th August 1977: 6th November 2044
6th August 1977 to 5th September 1977: 6th January 2045
6th September 1977 to 5th October 1977: 6th March 2045
6th October 1977 to 5th November 1977: 6th May 2045
6th November 1977 to 5th December 1977: 6th July 2045
6th December 1977 to 5th January 1978: 6th September 2045
6th January 1978 to 5th February 1978: 6th November 2045
6th February 1978 to 5th March 1978: 6th January 2046
6th March 1978 to 5th April 1978: 6th March 2046
Any person born after 5th April 1978: age 68.

The supplementary pension does not have a dependant’s pension attached to it and so it will not be paid to your spouse/civil partner in the event of your death before State Pension Age. Please note: if there are any further changes by the Government to SPA, so for example if SPA increases, then the date your Supplementary Pension is paid to will not change.

No. The Plan is closed to future accrual so members are not permitted to pay further contributions or transfer in benefits.

This information is available online under ‘quote options’ once you have completed the registration process. You can see this each time you log into the online portal. This will show your pension at date of leaving, revalued to date. For some members, this information is not available online; a message will appear on the page and a member of the administration team at Capita will have to perform a manual calculation. Please email snpensions@capita.co.uk from the email address you used to register with Capita or call them on 0345 600 2086 (+44 114 273 7331 if calling from overseas) to request this calculation.

The amount of State Pension you get will depend on how many years of qualifying National Insurance (NI) contributions you have. The State Pension system has changed, so in order to receive anything at all under the new system you will have to have at least 10 years of NI contributions. You can find out more here, on the gov website.

Although tax is not deducted from the State Pension when you receive it, the State Pension is taxable. HMRC will take into account your State Pension, your SNPP pension and any other income that you receive for the purpose of calculating your tax liability. Any tax which is due on your State Pension may be deducted from your SNPP pension.