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Here is a list of the specialised terms used in this website.


Actuarial Valuation

The Actuary’€™s assessment of the ability of the BCSSS Fund to meet its liabilities.


Additional Voluntary Contributions

Extra contributions paid to an individual arrangement with the Prudential during your BCSSS membership in order to provide additional benefits.


Bonus Augmentations

Benefit improvements from valuation surpluses arising from valuations undertaken between October 1994 and 12 February 2015.


Commutation

The exchange of a part or all of your BCSSS pension for an immediate lump sum.


Contributing Service

The total of:

  • the number of years and days of active membership during which you paid contributions to the Scheme
  • any back service credit granted in exchange for a transfer value payment from a previous scheme
  • any added years you purchased during your membership
  • extra service credits awarded from valuation surpluses prior to October 1994.

Deferred Pensioner

A contributor who leaves service before normal pension age without taking an immediate pension, receiving a refund of contributions, or transferring Scheme benefits to another arrangement.


Dependant

A person who is financially dependent on a member or pensioner at the time of death or retirement of the member or pensioner. For HMRC purposes, a spouse qualifies automatically as a dependant and a child of the member or pensioner may be regarded as a dependant until attaining the age of 18 or ceasing to receive full time or vocational training, if later. At the Trustees discretion, a pension may be payable to other dependants.


Earmarking

An order of the Court when a member of an occupational pension scheme or personal pension scheme divorces, directing the trustees or managers to pay some or all of the member’€™s benefits to the ex-spouse at the time they become payable to the member. Please note, the Scheme is only able to act on the instruction of a UK Court.


Election and Declaration

Used by members to indicate who they want to receive any lump sum death benefit.


Equivalent Pension Benefit

The benefit which must be provided for an employee who was contracted out of the former graduated pension scheme.


Family Benefit Contributions

Contributions paid to provide an entitlement to a spouse’s pension, to dependant’€™s allowance, and to children’€™s allowances.


Graduated Pension Scheme

The State scheme which commenced on 3 April 1961 and terminated on 5 April 1975.


Guaranteed Benefits

Scheme benefits covered by the Government guarantee.


Guarantor

The Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change.


Investment Reserve

Originally represented the Guarantor’€™s share of pre-1994 valuation surpluses in the Scheme at the time of restructuring in 1994 and was due to be paid to the Guarantor in 2019.

From 13 February 2015 the Investment Reserve ceased to exist and remains in the Scheme, acting as a buffer against adverse investment conditions. An amount equivalent to the former Investment Reserve, adjusted for increases in CPI between March 2015 and the date it is repaid in full, (the Repayment) is due to be paid to the Guarantor.

The Repayment is due to be paid to the Guarantor within twelve months of 31 March 2033. However the Trustee and the Guarantor may agree to retain part of the Repayment in the Scheme. If the Trustee and the Guarantor cannot agree the Actuary will advise how much of the Repayment (up to a maximum of 5% or such other percentage agreed by the Trustee and the Guarantor) needs to be retained so that the Scheme meets its obligations without additional payments from the Guarantor. If part of the Repayment is retained there may then be additional payments due to be paid to the Guarantor within twelve months of each third anniversary or 31 March 2033 until the Repayment is repaid in full.


Level Bonuses

2% bonuses awarded to members between 2014 and 2019.

From 1 January 2020 all current level and reducing bonuses in payment at that time will be added together to make one level bonus, which will be payable in perpetuity.


Pension Sharing

The splitting of a member’€™s benefits under a pension scheme between the member and the divorced spouse, either within the Scheme or by means of a transfer payment. Please note, the Scheme is only able to act on the instruction of a UK Court.


Pensionable age

Either the Scheme’€™s normal retirement age of 60 or, for members qualifying for early payment of pension as a result of redundancy, the date of redundancy, or age 50 if later.


Pensionable salary

The amount of contributor’€™s earnings used to calculate his or her pension entitlement at the date of leaving service, in accordance with the provisions of the Rules of the Scheme at that date.


Reducing bonuses

These were initially level bonuses awarded following previous valuations that showed the Scheme to be in surplus. Following the 2012 Actuarial Valuation, which showed the Scheme to be in deficit, ‘standstill’ was triggered and all level bonuses awarded before this date became reducing bonuses; reducing each year when the Guaranteed benefits increase by RPI. The reduction each year is equivalent to the increase in the Guaranteed benefits.

From 1 January 2020 all current level and reducing bonuses in payment at that time will be added together to make one level bonus, which will be payable in perpetuity.


Scheme Actuary

The Scheme’€™s adviser on financial issues including funding, investment, accounting and risk.


State Pension Age

The earliest age from which you can claim your State Pension, which can vary, depending when you were born and if you are male or female. There is a link to the Government’€™s State Pension Age calculator here.