As a Councillor, you are able to increase your benefits by making Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs).
The Gwynedd Pension Fund has an in-house scheme where you can invest money through the AVC provider, Clerical Medical.
Contributions will be deducted directly from your allowances before tax, so they will attract full tax relief. You can pay up to 50% of your taxable earnings into an in-house AVC in each employment where you pay into the LGPS. There is no lower limit as to what you can pay each month. Contact us if you wish to receive a quotation.
The money will be invested separately from your main contributions, in a fund of your choice with Clerical Medical. An account will be created in your name consisting of your contributions and any return on investment. The fund value cannot be released until you take your main scheme benefits.
When you retire, there are several options available with regard to taking the benefits from the Additional Voluntary Contributions fund. You will be given full details to enable you to make an informed choice.
The retirement options currently available are:
- To take an annuity from Clerical Medical with or without a 25% tax-free lump sum.
- To take an annuity from another provider- the open market option (any tax-free lump sum would depend on the new provider’s policy)
- To take a tax-free lump sum up to 100% of your Additional Voluntary Contributions fund, if the limits allowed are not exceeded. This figure will change as your salary and fund rises.
- To defer your AVC pension up to any time before age 75.
Some important things to note.
- There is no need for a medical examination before starting to contribute to the AVC fund.
- Deductions will start from the next available pay date after your election has been accepted.
- You can vary or cease payments at any time whilst you are contributing to the LGPS by a written request to the Gwynedd Pension Fund.
- You can change your investment choice at any time by a written request to the Gwynedd Pension Fund.
- If you die in service, the full fund value will be paid to your dependants / nominated person(s).
- If you leave local government employment and transfer your LGPS benefits to another non-LGPS scheme you can normally also transfer your AVC fund. You should ask your new pension provider for details.
- If you take your deferred AVC benefits at the same time as your deferred main scheme benefits, you will still, within the set limits, be allowed the option to take up to 100% tax free lump sum in respect of the AVC.
- If you decide to defer your AVC benefits up to any age before age 75 after taking your main pension benefits, then when you are ready to take your AVC benefits, only the options in section 1 & 2 above, will be available to you, with or without a 25% tax free lump sum.
AVC Application Form
List of Funds Available