For members of the Local Government Pension Scheme in Scotland
A list of questions on popular topics. This is where you will find information about death benefits, the McCloud court case and pensions and divorce.
The LGPS provides valuable life cover and financial protection for your family. Your dependents will be paid a pension. A lump sum death grant may also be payable. Watch the protection for your family video for a general overview.
A lump sum death grant is paid if, when you die, you are under age 75 and one of the following applies:
If you left before 1 April 1998 and are receiving your pension, a death grant may be paid when you die. The calculation is complex and you can ask your local pension fund for an estimate of the amount that may be payable.
Your local pension fund has absolute discretion over who receives any lump sum death grant. This means it can be paid to:
You can let your pension fund know who you would like any death grant paid to by completing an expression of wish form. Your pension fund will take your wishes into account when deciding who the death grant is paid to. Contact your pension fund to ask for a form.
If a death grant is not paid within two years of your pension fund finding out about the death, a tax charge will apply.
If you paid AVCs and were a member of the LGPS on or after 1 April 2015, your local pension fund will use its discretion to decide who receives any lump sum due from your AVC pot when you die. If you left the LGPS before 1 April 2015, your local pension fund must pay any lump sum due to your estate.
If you die when you are still paying into the LGPS, a lump sum death grant of three times your assumed pensionable pay is paid. It does not matter how long you have been a member of the LGPS, provided you are under age 75 at the date of death.
If you also have a deferred benefit and/or a pension in payment from a previous period of membership of the LGPS, the lump sum death grant paid is the greater of:
If, during the period used to determine assumed pensionable pay, you were working reduced contractual hours because of ill-health, the assumed pensionable pay is calculated on the pay you would have received during that period had you not been working reduced contractual hours.
If you pay Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs) arranged through the LGPS, the value of your AVC fund is also payable.
If you die after leaving the LGPS and before you take your pension, you hold a deferred benefit in the LGPS. The lump sum death grant payable depends on when you left:
However, if you left with deferred benefits and die before receiving them and you are also an active member of the LGPS when you die, the death grant payable is the higher of:
If you hold more than one deferred benefit in the LGPS a death grant will be paid from each deferred benefit, provided you are not also an active member of the LGPS.
If you paid Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs) arranged through the LGPS, the value of your AVC fund is also payable.
If you left after 31 March 2015 and you die within 10 years of receiving your pension, provided you are under age 75, the death grant payable is 10 times the amount of your pension before you gave up any pension for lump sum (if applicable), less the pension and lump sum that has been paid to you. There is a slight difference to the calculation for any part of your pension that relates to membership before 1 April 2015.
If you left before 1 April 2015 and you die within 10 years of receiving your pension, provided you are under age 75, the death grant payable is 10 times the amount of your pension, less the pension already paid to you.
If you left before 1 April 2009 and you die within five years of receiving your pension, provided you are under age 75, the death grant payable is five times the amount of your pension, less the pension already paid to you.
If you left before 1 April 1998 – the calculation is more complex. You can ask your local pension fund for an estimate of the amount that may be payable.
If you are also an active member when you die, the death grant payable is the higher of the amount calculated as above, or three times your assumed pensionable pay in your active employment.
Your spouse, civil partner or eligible cohabiting partner will receive part of your pension. Generally, this is:
The pension will be paid for the rest of their life. However, where you left the LGPS before 1 April 1998, the pension may stop if your partner remarries, enters into a civil partnership or cohabits. Contact your local pension fund for more information.
If you die in service as a member of the L G P S, the pension will include a part of the increase you would have received if you had retired on ill-health.
If you leave before retirement with deferred benefits and die before taking them, the pension is generally the relevant percentage of your deferred pension.
If you die after receiving your pension, the pension is generally the relevant percentage of your pension.
Some parts of your pension may not count. This includes extra pension you paid for by making additional pension contributions.
Pensions for eligible cohabiting partners can only be paid if you left the LGPS after 31 March 2009. The pension is also only based on your membership after 5 April 1988, unless you elected before 1 April 2015 to pay extra contributions for membership before 6 April 1988 to count.
Also, the amount may be less where you entered into the civil partnership or marriage after leaving the LGPS.
If you die after receiving your pension and you left the LGPS before 1 April 2009, the pension may be paid at a higher rate for a short period after your death. This will either be for three or six months.
Your eligible children will receive part of your pension when you die. The amount paid will depend on how many eligible children you have and whether a pension is also being paid to your partner.