Rejoining the LGPS

If you re-join the LGPS and you did not claim a refund or make a transfer of contributions relating to your earlier post, then you may have:

  • Made pension contributions in a previous LGPS employment without building up the right to a pension and left your contributions in the scheme as a 'preserved refund'. This will be joined with your new active pension account or:
  • A previous deferred LGPS pension. When you re-join the scheme, your previous deferred pensions are dealt with differently depending on when you left and they became deferred:
LGPS accounts which became deferred on or after 1 April 2014

Deferred LGPS pensions will normally be joined to your new pension account automatically, unless you elect to keep them separate. If you want to keep your pension accounts separate, you must inform us within 12 months of joining the LGPS, unless your employer has a policy to allow longer.

LGPS accounts which became deferred before 1 April 2014

Your deferred pension will stay separate from your new pension account unless you elect to combine them. If you want to combine them, you must inform us within 12 months of joining the LGPS, unless your employer has a policy to allow longer.

Your employer can extend the 12 month period for you to make a decision. They must have a published policy on this - you will need to check with your employer for details.

Making your decision

There are lots of things you should consider before deciding to combine or keep your pensions accounts separate. It may be best for some people to join their pensions together, but better for others to request that they stay separate. The starter information booklet includes notes to help you decide what to do. You may wish to consult an independent financial advisor.

You can find the Starter Information Booklet on our forms page. 

You will then need to make your choice either to combine or to keep your pension accounts separate by completing a Membership option form. The easiest and most secure way to do this is through our Member Portal (select "Membership details" then "update my Membership option form").

If you need form in an alternative format, please see our resources page on the website.

Five year final salary link

If you:

  • have a deferred pension and
  • paid into the LGPS before April 2014 and
  • left the LGPS after 1 April 2014 and
  • re-join the LGPS in England or Wales, without a continuous break in active membership of a public sector pension scheme of more than 5 years


  • your deferred pension will be automatically aggregated with your new membership and
  • your membership before 1 April 2014 will continue to count as final salary membership and will be linked to your final pay in your new active membership.

During your first 12 months of your new membership, you may elect to keep your deferred pension separate. In this case, there will be no link to the final pay in the new membership.

If the break in membership from public service pension schemes is more than five years, then any previous LGPS pension that you transfer to your new LGPS account will not be linked to your final pay but instead will buy annual pension in the CARE scheme.

Relevant information