What happens if I leave BT?
If you decide to leave BT you have a number of options:
- Leave your pension savings in the BTRSS until you retire and make no more payments to your plan.
- Leave your pension savings with Standard Life and continue to pay into your plan subject to HMRC limits. Please note that once you have left BT employment, BT will not make any payments to the BTRSS on your behalf.
- Transfer your pension savings to another pension arrangement – for example, that operated by your new employer.
Standard Life makes a fund management charge. The amount depends on the fund or funds you are invested in. However, BT has negotiated special terms for its employees which means that Standard Life rebates part of the fund management charge by adding extra units to your fund each month. If you leave BT employment the amount Standard Life rebates will be reduced. This will happen 12 months after you leave BT employment at which time the yearly rate used to calculate the amount of the extra units added to your fund will reduce by 0.3%. Although you will then pay 0.3% more, you will still be benefitting from a reduced rate negotiated by BT. For an explanation of the yearly rate, please see the Key Features Illustration.
For more information on the charges and rebate please see the The BT Retirement Saving Scheme booklet. If you used to be a member of the Syntegra Limited Flexible Pension Plan (SLFPP) please call the BT Helpline on 0800 066 5432 for information on your specific terms.
What happens if I retire?
You can retire any time after age 55. You should normally take your benefits by age 75.
What happens when I retire?
When you retire, you can use the money that has built up in your pension savings to buy benefits for your retirement. Typically these benefits take the form of an annuity that will pay you a retirement income for the rest of your life.
You also have the option to take a tax-free lump sum, however this will reduce the amount of money you have to buy an annuity, and therefore will reduce your pension income. Your pension income can be provided by Standard Life or you can transfer your pension pot to another provider.
GFRPs include an Open Market Option. This gives you the right to transfer your pension funds and buy your annuity from a different provider.
Can I start taking my benefits before I retire?
You may be able to take your benefits before age 55 if you are in ill health.
You can start taking all or part of your pension at any time between ages 55 and 75, including while you’re still working. If you are invested in the GSIPP you can take all your retirement benefits on the same day or take them in stages. Please see the Key Features Document for more information.
If you are invested in the GFRP you can use all of your plan value to buy a pension, which will be taxable. Or you can normally take up to a quarter of the plan value as a tax-free lump sum, plus a smaller taxable pension. Please see the Key Features Document for more information.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has imposed a Lifetime Allowance on the total funds placed into registered pension arrangements that can be used to provide benefits for you. The current lifetime allowance is £1.5 million. General information on these changes can be found in the Information about tax relief, limits & your pension document. You should seek financial advice if you're not sure how this will affect you.
What happens if I continue to work after age 65?
If you continue to work for BT after age 65, you can choose to leave your money in the BTRSS. If you continue to make payments to it, so will BT, however, you should normally take your benefits by age 75.