NILGOSC News: Employers

Will the value of Scheme pensions be affected by the pandemic?

No. Pensions are not linked to stock market performance – they are based on salary and how long a member has paid in. Pensions in payment will not be affected.The only exception is Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs). It is possible that the value of AVCs may have reduced. Members may wish to check the value […]

Will employer contribution rates be affected by the pandemic?

Following the 2019 triennial valuation of the Scheme, the actuary set the employer contribution rates for the three years from 1 April 2020. Due to uncertainty regarding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the funding of the Scheme at that time the actuary and the Committee reserved the right to review and increase the […]

What happens if an employer is in severe financial difficulty?

Any employer in such a position should contact NILGOSC. If it appears likely that an employer may not be able to meet its obligations to the Scheme NILGOSC may seek Departmental approval to require the active members to cease future accrual. Once there are no active members, the employer will become an exiting employer, an […]

Can an employer defer payment of strain costs e.g. redundancy costs?

No. NILGOSC’s Funding Strategy Statement (section 5.3.1) requires immediate payment of strain costs resulting from early retirements, augmentation of membership, additional pension and any other one-off strain costs.

What happens if an employer pays over its contributions late?

NILGOSC may charge interest on the late payment at the rate of base rate plus one percent from the due date to the payment date with three monthly rests. If NILGOSC has reasonable cause to believe that the failure is likely to be of material significance to the Pension Regulator (tPR) then it must give […]

Can employers delay paying over employee contributions?

No. In the Employer Guide (section 13.2) NILGOSC asks employers to pay over employer and employee contributions by the first working day of the month following the month to which the contributions relate. If a payment is received more than 10 days late then interest may be charged. By law employee contributions must be paid over by […]

Can members make contributions to NILGOSC in respect of temporary jobs outside of NILGOSC employers?

No. Members can only make contributions to the Scheme in respect of their earnings from a Scheme employer.

Can members take a contribution holiday?

No. The Scheme is contributory. A member, in normal circumstances, must either pay contributions at their rate of pensionable pay while in the main section or they can elect to be in the 50/50 section and pay half the contributions and their pension will then build up at half the rate. Some members may find […]

Can employers take a contribution holiday?

No. Once the actuary certifies the contributions for a year then they must be paid over in that year. NILGOSC provided all employers with the 2019 Valuation Report on 31 March 2020. This report included the actuary’s Rates and Adjustments Certificate that states the minimum contributions that are payable each Scheme year from 1 April […]

How will being on furlough affect a member’s death in service benefits?

Assumed Pensionable Pay (APP) is used in the calculation of the death grant and any survivor benefits if a member dies in service.  APP is usually calculated using the average pensionable pay the member receives in the three months before the pay period in which they die.  If a member receiving reduced furlough pay dies […]

Should furlough pay be used to determine an employee’s contribution band?

Yes. If furlough pay forms all or part of a member’s pensionable pay it should be used to determine the employee contribution rate on 1 April 2020. It is also possible for an employer to reallocate a member to a different band during the year. If they do so, they must inform the member. Employers […]

How will furlough pay affect build-up of pension?

Members will build up CARE pension based on the actual pay received. If the furlough pay is 80% of what the member would normally receive then the pension they will build up will be 80% of what they would normally have built up. The member can choose to buy additional pension to make up for […]