Pensions

We offer advice and action on UK doctors' pensions issues, including the NHS pension scheme 2015, contributions, annual allowance and tax.

Piggybank illustration
Contract and pen article illustration
Unlawful age discrimination in the pension scheme

The Government conceded that the protection offered to older members when introducing new public sector pension schemes resulted in unlawful discrimination to younger members. 

Read our consultation response

How we represent you

The BMA pensions department

We can give you guidance and represent your interests in relation to your pension. Find out how the BMA can help you.

In the event of death

Death in service and your pension

Guidance about the benefits available if you die in NHS service, who they can be allocated to and whether they are taxable as well as answers to queries about child allowance.

Death after leaving the NHS and your pension

This guidance is for doctors who have left or retired from NHS pensionable service with deferred benefits and for those who have retired.

Calculating your pension

Calculate your NHS pension

What will your NHS pension be when you retire? Use our pension calculator to estimate your pension benefits in minutes.

Calculating your pension lump sum

This guidance answers all your queries on the lump sum you receive at retirement from your NHS post – how much you will get, how much will get taxed and what commutation is.

Your final pensionable pay

As a secondary care doctor in the 1995 section of the NHS pension scheme, or who has since transitioned to the 2015 scheme, this guidance can help calculate your final pensionable pay.

Pensionable service guide for secondary care doctors

This guidance covers what elements of your service and time are contributing to your NHS pension, what reckonable pay is, what whole-time is defined as and how your final pension pot is calculated.

NHS pension contribution rates

A summary of contribution rates to your pension from you as an employee and your employer.

Tax

NHS pension annual allowance

Doctors are being excessively taxed on their pensions. This guidance informs you about your annual allowance statement and your options should you be charged.

The BMA Goldstone pension modeller

The modeller will provide an accurate estimate for your pension if you are a consultant or SAS doctor in the 1995, 2008 or 2015 schemes. It will estimate your annual allowance and lifetime allowance charges.

Pension taxation and using scheme pays guide for GPs

Guidance for GPs on the annual allowance scheme pays election, deadlines for submission and changes to the threshold income.

BMA action on NHS pension annual allowance

The BMA is supporting our members by ensuring that you are aware of the tax implications of the annual allowance and by giving you the tools to assess the impact on you personally.

NHS pension lifetime allowance

Our guidance offers everything you need to know about your NHS pension lifetime allowance. The BMA can help you to make the best decisions with your pension and reduce your potential tax charge – give us a call.

A change to your circumstances

Ill health retirement and your pension

Guidance on ill health retirement including definitions, possible outcomes and effects on your pension.

Ill health retirement and your pension for transitional members

This guidance addresses the main queries concerning ill health retirement for members of the 2015 NHS pension scheme who also have membership in the 1995 or 2008 sections of the scheme.

Sick leave and your pension

We guide you through how sick leave affects your pension pot, covering deemed pay, stepping back, disallowed days and additional pension purchase.

Maternity, paternity and adoption leave and your pension

We cover the basics of the effects that leave can have on your pension, including what contributions you and your employer make and if your leave is pensionable.

Authorised absences and your pension

Authorised absence is where you take unpaid leave from work for an agreed period – find out how this effects your pension pot, how long you can take and under what circumstances.

Direction status - NHS pensions for non-NHS organisation employees

Direction status allows individuals who are not working in the NHS to remain members of the NHS pension scheme. This guidance covers the types of status and how you and your organisation can apply.

Being a member of a pension scheme

Armed forces doctors pension scheme

Read the need to know information on the 1975 and 2005 sections of the armed forces pension scheme.

The NHS pension scheme as a sessional GP

Guidance for sessional and locum GPs on your pension tier, submitting the right forms to Capita (PCSE) on time and annualisation. 

An introduction to the NHS pension scheme for locum GPs

Your pension can be hard to navigate as a locum GP. Here we guide you on how to pension locum earnings, opting out of the NHS scheme and how your benefits are calculated.

GP flexibilities in your NHS pension scheme

This guidance is for doctors who mostly work in primary care but also have responsibilities in secondary care and how this will affect your pension.

The NHS pension scheme as a mental health officer

Holding mental health officer status can have a big impact on your pension pot. Read the benefits, your options and when you can retire with MHO status.

Local government pension scheme

The LGPS (local government pension scheme) is a statutory pension scheme for employees of local authorities. Find out about the benefits and your rights as a doctor.

The NHS pension scheme as a medical director

It can be hard to know whether to pension your earnings as a medical or clinical director. Here we answer when and whether it is beneficial for you.

Returning to work

Returning to work after retirement

Guidance on returning to work after retirement including rules on retirement, taking a break in service and limits to working hours and NHS earnings.

NHS pension abatement rules

When abatement applies, what your pre-retirement pensionable NHS earnings are and other issues.

Transitioning to the 2015 NHS pension scheme

About the 2015 NHS pension scheme

Approximately 75% of existing NHS employees and all new employees will have joined the 2015 NHS pension scheme. The BMA can help you with any questions you may have about your pension.

Can I join the 2015 NHS pension scheme?

You may be questioning whether you can join the NHS pension scheme if you left employment and wish to return. You may also be a new doctor and want to know more about the available pension schemes.

Mental health officer status in the 2015 NHS pension scheme

This page is relevant to you if you have joined the 2015 NHS pension scheme and you also have membership in the 1995 and 2008 sections of the scheme with mental health officer status.

Leaving the NHS pension scheme

Taking early retirement

We cover what voluntary early retirement is, if you should take your NHS pension early and how much your pension will be reduced by.

Opting out of the NHS pension scheme

Given increases to contributions and reduced annual and lifetime allowance limits, doctors are asking if they are better leaving the NHS pension scheme. The BMA can support you with your decision.

When can I take my NHS pension?

We look at the position for doctors who have a mixture of benefits in different sections of the NHS pension scheme and when they can draw them.

Transferring money out of the NHS pension scheme

This guidance sets out why and how you may want to transfer your pension benefits from the NHS pension scheme into another scheme, depending on where you are in your career.

Refunding your pension contributions

When are refunds of NHS pension contributions payable, how do you apply and is a refund good value for money?

Moving between NHS and university employment and your pension

The implications of moving between the university superannuation scheme and NHS pension scheme.

Increases to your pension

Half cost added years for 1995 section pension members

Purchasing additional membership for members who could not achieve maximum membership at normal pension age.

Additional pension purchase

Guidance for doctors on additional NHS pension, what it costs, what the payment options are and how it is affected by leave or absence and other issues.

Inflationary increases to your NHS pension

This guidance covers how much inflation might increase your pension, how it’s applied and by who and information on guaranteed minimum pension and second bit pensions.