Update for members who are considering retirement prior to the Plan leaving PPF assessment

This update does not apply to you if you have already returned a Pension Option form to retire when the Plan exits PPF assessment, or you have already received a retirement quotation from the Plan Administrator for retirement before the Plan exits PPF assessment or will reach Normal Retirement Age before the Plan leaves PPF assessment.

When we sent out your option letters earlier this year, some members who were either approaching or had reached their normal retirement age were given the option to take retirement at the time the Plan exits PPF assessment.

If you decided not to take up this option, then you will still be able to get a retirement quotation from our chosen insurance provider, based on their terms, once benefits have been secured and the insurance transaction has been completed.

In order to ensure a smooth process leading up to securing member benefits from our chosen insurer in October 2018, we have decided to suspend the normal Plan retirement process which is only available to members on request who are over Minimum Pension Age (see your Option letter). However, we recognise that for some members this may create hardship if personal circumstances have changed since receipt of your original option letter. If this applies to you, please contact the Plan Administrator as soon as possible and be prepared to share details of your circumstances so that this can be referred to the Trustee for consideration.

Update from the Trustee on the option letters

The deadline of 8 June for returning option forms is fast approaching. If this deadline applies to you, and you want to make a positive option choice, but have not done so already, please send in your form by post as soon as possible ahead of the deadline to make sure it is received. We will confirm receipt of option forms, in writing, by the end of June.

As you will appreciate, we have already received a large number of option forms and this number will increase as we approach the deadline. These take time to process and record on our systems. Therefore, if you have not received confirmation that we have received your form, please do not call the helpline until early July. The administration team are unable to confirm receipt of forms on an individual basis in the meantime.


As set out in the option letters dated 9 March, the final deadline for return of forms is 8 June. This date is an important deadline for the Plan. This is because the Trustee has to know members’ option decisions by then in order to conduct an orderly process with competing insurers to get the best deal for all members when the Plan leaves PPF assessment later this year.

This deadline also has to be strictly applied because many members have already met this deadline and any delays to the overall process will mean a subsequent delay for everyone’s new benefits.

As set out in the letters dated 9 March and the reminder postcards issued on 27 April, if you are in the UK and the transfer option applied to you, then the deadline for registering for transfer advice has now passed. This deadline was set early to allow reasonable time to seek IFA advice and complete the necessary paperwork. Please do not now contact the helpline or mailbox requesting transfer packs.

Responses to Enquiries

The pension option letters have triggered a huge number of enquiries to the helpline. Our administrators are currently experiencing a very heavy workload dealing with questions from members. With the deadline now approaching, unfortunately we cannot guarantee that new questions will be answered before 8 June, but the information you are requesting may be found in the pack sent to you.

If you have an option form still to complete, please refer to the comprehensive information included in the letter, the accompanying factsheets and also look on the website at the detailed FAQs to help you make your decision.

Lifetime Allowance

Issues regarding the Lifetime Allowance (LTA) and other taxation liabilities are the responsibility of the member rather than the Plan. If you received a letter marked L25 in the top right hand corner, the Trustee recognised that, in order for you to make a decision regarding your options, you may have to consider how the amount of LTA used up, if any, changes depending on the option you select. Letters were issued on 27 April 2018 to those members currently expected to be affected by the LTA in relation to one or more of their options. Some pensioner members who received other letters (eg L24) could still be affected by the LTA when their new pension starts later this year. If this applies to you then the Trustee will provide you with further details.