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Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by slugcampbell, Mar 29, 2009.

  1. I am starting a job in an independent school in September. One of the conditions in my contract says, "the teacher is required to participate in the Department of Education's Superannuation Scheme (S.T.S.S) under the Teachers' Superannuation Regulations 1976 as amended from time to time."
    I am only doing a 1 year maternity contract and will then be returning to NZ. What is the scheme and can I opt out to get more money in hand?
    Any advice?

  2. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    If you are a full-time teacher you may not opt out. Part-timers may, however.
    All the details can be found by googling Teachers' pensions UK
    Best wishes
  3. tafkam

    tafkam Occasional commenter

    Really? That seems quite harsh! One of those things I'll never understand about the Indie sector perhaps?
    Presumably though, the rules about withdrawal are the same regardless of your sector. That is, if you have less than 2 years worth of contributions at the time you leave the scheme then you can withdraw any money paid into it (minus tax, etc.) and have it back.
  4. Just talk to the Bursar, you just need to fill in a form to opt out. This can be downloaded from the TPS website.
  5. landaise

    landaise Occasional commenter

    So from your answers I understand that someone like me who worked for four years as a teacher in the UK is not entitled to a refund on pension payments but equally not entitled to a pension!
    Seems rather unfair: pay in over £5000 ang get nothing from it!
  6. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    You cannot withdraw your contributions but you WILL get a pension at retirement age (or death benefit prior to that).
    It is only those with under 2 years in the scheme at retirement who cannot get any payout, except a refund of the contributions (minus the extra tax and NI that would have been deducted had theynever paid into the scheme in the first place).
    If you know for DEFINITE that you will never add to a membership of under 2 years in the TPS, you should do one of 2 things:
    1) Tranfer the pension into your new career pension (in the UK) if the 2 schemes are compatible. Do this within 1 year of joining the new scheme. You get a quotation for how many years and months the TPS membership will buy in the new scheme.
    If you don't want to do this ...
    2) Claim a refund of the TPS payments, minus tax and NI.
    As to the idea that only part-time teachers can OPT OUT of the TPS, I think that is untue.
    Formerly, full timers were (and are) automatically Opted In and had/ have to formally Opt Out if they didn't want to participate.
    Part-timers were not automatically in the TPS and had to formally Opt In.
    However, changes a few years ago standardised the treatment of all teachers. All are now automatically in the TPS unless they Opt Out.
    You should get financial advice before Opting Out of a final salary pension scheme - the Gold Standard of PENSIONS AND NOT TO BE REJECTED LIGHTLY!
    Many f/t teachers Opted Out in the 1980s and 1990s and lost out big-time when they transferred to private, money purchase schemes. If they kept abreast of things they claimed mis-seLling of the private pensions and got compensation that allowed them to buy back into the TPS.
    remember that if you Opt Out you will not have THE SAME AMOUNT EXTRA IN YOUR PAY THAT IS PRESENTLY DEDUCTED FOR SUPERANNUATION. Pension payments are exempt from tax and are deducted from your pay before tax is levied. You therefore pay less tax and NI. Remove the pension deduction and you pay tax at your highest rate on the sum.
  7. catmother

    catmother Star commenter

    Why would you not be entitled to a pension?
  8. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    Anyone who has worked in the UK and paid National Insurance will have built up an entitlement to the State retirement pension.
    This can be drawn when you reach UK retirement age, even if you are living abroad.
    In some countries you do not get the payments index-linked. They stay at the same level as paid in your first state pension payment. In most countries you get the same payment as you would receive were you living in the UK.
    If you Opt Out of an Occupational Pension scheme in the UK, you are automatically included in the State second pension (SERPS- sTATE eARNINGS RELATED PENSION Scheme) via increased NI payments. This gives you an add-on to your eventual State retirement pension.
  9. Just fill a form and the pension expertise will do the rest they are very expert about this. there phone number is (zero one two zero two eight six six five zero one). If you get help there it will be great pleasure for me.

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