If you wish to apply for your retirement benefits on ill health grounds, there is a different process depending on whether you are a contributing member or a member with benefits on hold.
If you have to leave work at any age due to illness, you may be eligible to receive immediate payment of your benefits. Your employer can retire you on ill health grounds providing you have been in the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) for at least two years and you meet the following criteria:
- You must be permanently unable to do your current job.
- You must not have the ability to obtain gainful employment of at least 30 hours a week that lasts a minimum of 12 months.
The decision to award ill health retirement is down to your employer who will consult with an approved doctor. The doctor might not need to see you, but will arrange a suitable time if they do.
Once you have been assessed by the doctor and meet the above criteria, the doctor will award one of three tiers:
- Tier 1 – You are not likely to have the ability to obtain gainful employment before your normal pension age (NPA). You will receive an enhancement of 1/49 of your pensionable pay multiplied by the number of years until your NPA.
- Tier 2 – You are not likely to have the ability to obtain gainful employment in the next three years but are likely to before your NPA. You will receive an enhancement equivalent to 25 per cent of the tier 1 enhancement.
- Tier 3 – You are likely to have the ability to obtain gainful employment within three years. You will not receive any enhancement. Please be aware that tier 3 pensions are only temporary and will stop after a maximum of three years. They will stop earlier if you find gainful employment or it is decided that you are fit for gainful employment at a review carried out after 18 months.
To be able to access your benefits because of ill health your employer must specifically retire you under ill health grounds. If you have already left your job please see our leaflet on ill health retirement for members with their benefits on hold.
For more detailed guidance please use our Retiring on the grounds of ill health leaflet.
Possibly. You can ask your former employer to let you access your benefits from any age on ill health grounds. However, you must meet certain criteria to receive them.
The decision to award ill health retirement is for your former employer. They must consult with an approved doctor before making their decision. The doctor might not need to see you, but they will arrange a suitable time with you if they do.
If your employer decides to award your pension to you, we won’t apply reductions because of early access.
For more detailed information on the criteria that you must meet and the process to follow, please read drawing your deferred benefits on the grounds of ill health guide.
Please contact your former employer if you think you meet the requirements.