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Employers Newsletter Quarter 1 – 2024/2025

This Newsletter contains information about:

  • Continuation of Added Years/Additional Pension/ERRBO Contracts
  • Special Class & Mental Health Officer Abatement Provision
  • Consideration for Ill Health Retirement Applications – update
  • Contact Us

This newsletter can also be downloaded in a printable format here.

  • Continuation of Added Years/Additional Pension/ ERRBO Contracts

    If a member of staff is paying additional contributions to the HSC Pension Scheme for Added years, Additional Pension Purchase or an ERRBO they must inform you as the Employer to allow the continuation of the contract. This should occur each time there is a change in post.

    The New Joiner & Re-joiner forms ask for information in relation to these contracts and details the importance of providing a copy of the contract to the Employer.

    If a member states on the form that they have a contract but have not provided details please follow up with them to ensure the correct contributions are being collected and to avoid an accumulation of arrears.

    Note: If there has been a break of more than 12 months they cannot re-start an Added years contract.

  • Special Class & Mental Health Officer Abatement Provision

    From 25 March 2020, the UK government’s emergency legislation to help address the Coronavirus Pandemic suspended some regulations to facilitate the return to HSC Employment for retired members of the HSC Pension Scheme.

    It also allowed retired members who have already returned to work to increase their commitments if needed, without affecting their pension benefits.

    The limit on earnings (commonly referred to as abatement) normally imposed on Special Class Nursing Staff (SCN’s) or Mental Health Officers (MHO’s) on return to HSC Employment after retirement and before age 60 was one such regulation which was suspended.

    As part of amended regulations this rule has now been abolished meaning that SCN’s or MHO’s who retire after age 55 and return to HSC Employment before age 60 will no longer be subject to the abatement regulation i.e. there will be no limit on how much they can earn.

  • Consideration for Ill Health Retirement Applications update

    HSC Pension Service continue to send Applications for consideration for Ill Health Retirement to the alternative provider BHSF. The NICS OHS are still not in a position to offer us an adequate service due to staffing levels.

    Decisions are now being returned to HSCPS within 6-8 weeks. As discussed during the Employer Forum in February 2024 we would like to reiterate that employers should not request Ill Health Retirement estimates. The turnaround for estimates is approximately 13 weeks, therefore members will have received their decision prior to receiving an estimate. Serious ill health cases continue to be dealt with as a matter of urgency