If your working days are over – or almost over – and you’re ready to reap the rewards of your pension contributions, it’s important to know what happens next.

You can learn more about the different options available to you at retirement in your member booklet and in the ‘retirement options’ section.

Receiving your benefits

Your pension will be paid in regular instalments direct to your bank/building society account by the Scheme administrator, Railpen.

Your cash lump sum will be paid shortly after your retirement date.

When you've retired, you can check out your payslips and P60s by logging into your online account.

Tax on your pension

Your pension – like any other income – is taxed within the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) scheme.

Tax is taken from your pension payment before you receive it, based on a tax code supplied by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

If you have any queries about your tax code, you should contact your tax office directly.

For UK tax, telephone 0300 200 3300 and quote your National Insurance number.

Pension increases

Each April, you receive an increase to your benefits in line with inflation. This is based on the Retail Price Index (RPI) figure for the previous September.

If the increase in RPI is more than 5%, the Company may limit the increase to an amount less than the change in RPI, but this cannot be less than 5%. If you are a male pensioner over the age of 65 or a female pensioner over the age of 60, elements of your pension called Guaranteed Minimum Pension (GMP) will increase at different rates. Full information will be provided in your annual increase statement issued to you each April.

Benefits after death

The Scheme not only provides you with an income for retirement, but can also help provide for your loved ones if you die.

A number of benefits may be payable to your dependants, including one or more of the following:

  • a spouse’s pension
  • a dependant’s pension
  • children’s pensions
  • a lump-sum

You should check your member booklet or contact your pension scheme administrator, Railpen, for more information on the death benefits you may be entitled to as a Scheme member.

Death benefits and Nominations

When you die, a pension may be paid to your beneficiaries.

If you die before you claim your Scheme benefits or within 5 years of taking them, a lump sum or refund of contributions may be paid to your beneficiaries.

You can tell the Trustee who you’d like your beneficiaries to be by logging into your online account. Alternatively, you can complete a Nomination form.

To change your beneficiaries, simply submit a new Nomination. This will override any previous nominations. Please complete a new Nomination every few years, even if your wishes haven’t changed, so the Trustee knows they’re up to date.

However, you can only add, change or update your nominations if you've retired within the last five years.

Keeping your details up to date

You should tell your pension scheme administrator, Railpen, about any changes in your circumstances as soon as possible. This includes if you move house or change your bank account. You can check and update your contact details by logging into your online account.

Any questions?

If you have any queries about your pension, you can log into your online account and go to 'Contact us', or visit the FAQ section.