The normal retirement age for Councillors in the Gwynedd Pension Fund is age 65.
However, it is possible for you to retire early and receive your pension benefits from age 60 or in certain circumstances from age 55. Alternatively, if you decide to work beyond age 65 you can continue to be a member of the scheme up until a day before your 75th birthday.
Your pension benefits can be paid at any age if you have to retire due to ill health.
Please see below for further information on the different types of retirement and any minimum age limits that may apply:
Retiring voluntarily between age 60 – 64
You can elect to retire early and receive your pension benefits from the Gwynedd Pension Fund at any time from age 60 onwards. If you decide to retire between age 60 and 64, you do not need your council’s consent, however, you will need to inform them of your intention to retire.
Retiring voluntarily between age 55 – 60
You can elect to retire early and receive your pension benefits at any time from age 55 to 59, however, this is only possible if you have your council’s consent. This is a council discretion and they will have a policy statement which specifies how they deal with applications for retirement between age 55 and 59.
Reductions for retiring early
When retiring early, the pension and lump sum retirement grant you receive will be based on the membership you have accrued up to the date of retirement.
If you joined the scheme on or after 1st October 2006 and you retire before age 65, your pension and lump sum retirement grant will be reduced due to them being paid earlier and possibly, for longer. The reduction will be applied as a percentage to your pension and lump sum. The nearer you are to age 65 when you retire, the smaller the reduction will be.
If you were a Councillor in the Local Government Pension Scheme on 30 September 2006 and you would have met the 85 year rule at retirement, all or part of your benefits may be protected from the reduction.
If you retire voluntarily before age 65, you can choose to keep your benefits preserved in the Gwynedd Pension Fund until a later date so that no reduction or a smaller reduction is applied to your benefits.
If you carry on in office after age 65 you can continue to pay into the Gwynedd Pension Fund and build up more benefits in the scheme.
You can choose to receive your pension when you retire or later although your pension must be paid to you before your 75th birthday.
If you draw your pension after age 65 the pension will be enhanced when it becomes payable to take account of it being payable for a shorter time.
Ill health retirement
If you have at least 3 months total membership as a councillor in the Gwynedd Pension Fund and an Independent Registered Medical Practitioner certifies that you have become permanently unable, until your 65th birthday, to perform the duties of your office efficiently because of ill health or infirmity of mind or body, you will receive your pension and lump sum immediately.
The Independent Registered Medical Practitioner must be qualified in occupational health medicine, be approved by the Gwynedd Pension Fund and must not have been previously involved in your case.
If you are eligible to retire on the grounds of ill health, the level of pension benefits you will receive is calculated by taking into account your total membership in the scheme and your career average pay. However, if your total membership is five years or over, your total membership used to calculate your benefits will be increased as specified below:
- Less than 5 years total membership = No increase in membership
- Between 5 and 10 years total membership = Total membership doubled
- Between 10 and 13 1/3 years total membership = Total membership increased to 20 years
- Over 13 1/3 years total membership = Total membership increased by 6 2/3 years
If your membership is increased, it must not exceed the total membership that would have accrued had you continued in service until age 65.