Transferring benefits into the Local Government Pension Scheme

If you have previous pension benefits, you may wish to transfer them into the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS). Transfers must usually be made within the first 12 months of your LGPS membership in your current employment.

How do I transfer my previous LGPS benefits?

If you have left your LGPS employment and rejoin in the same or a different fund, your periods of LGPS membership will be automatically combined, unless you elect to keep them separate within 12 months of rejoining the scheme.

However, if you left the scheme before 1 April 2014 and rejoin you will need to elect to combine the benefits. If you haven't had a continuous break of more than five years, you will retain the final salary link to all of your benefits built up before 1 April 2014.

If you rejoin the LGPS after having previously left an LGPS employment without building up pension rights but you deferred taking a refund of contributions then this deferred refund must be joined with your new active pension account in the scheme.

For more information on this and to tell us about your previous benefits and election, refer to:

This should be sent to your employer.

How do I transfer my external pension benefits?

In addition to another LGPS benefit you may also be able to transfer any number of the following into the scheme:

  • a previous employer's pension scheme (including an overseas occupational pension scheme)
  • a self-employed pension plan
  • a 'buy-out' policy
  • a personal pension plan
  • a stakeholder pension scheme

The LGPS regulations do not allow us to accept:

  • transfer of a pension in drawdown
  • partial transfer of a pension
  • transfers containing pension credits awarded under pension sharing orders.
  • previous membership in the LGPS as a Councillor

The value of the transfer will be used to buy service credits or earned pension or both (depending on the type of transfer received) into the scheme to increase the amount of pension you accrue when you retire.

If you decide to investigate a transfer into the scheme, you will be provided with an estimate of the 'earned pension' credit that this transfer value will buy in the LGPS, before you make a final decision.

How do I arrange a transfer?

The transfer of your benefits needs to be completed within 12 months of you joining the LGPS. The transfer process is described in detail in the:

Alternatively your employer can provide you with a copy when you join the LGPS.