When we pay into a teacher’s pension each month, we contribute more than our benefits in retirement. There are safeguards within your pension that can support your family in the event of your death.
What are family benefits?
Family benefits are paid to your spouse, civil partner or nominated other. Benefits are also paid to children under the age of 23 who are still in full-time education.
If you die in service, an enhancement is applied to the benefits received by your family. The same is true if you were required to retire due to ill health or total incapacity. When you die in service, your surviving spouse, civil partner, or qualifying surviving partner will also receive a death grant. You can also nominate someone else to receive this death grant.
If you receive at least half of your pay while off sick when you die, the Teacher’s Pension Scheme will consider you as in-service.
There are many finer details to family benefits that you learn about by visiting the Teachers’ Pension Scheme website or conversing with an independent financial advisor.
What do I need to do?
The most important action to take based on this information is the management of your nominated person. By signing up for My Pension Online, you can nominate whoever you choose to receive your benefits. You should also mirror this nomination in your will for the sake of clarity.
It is important to keep the management of this nomination up to date. It is well worth signing into your My Pension Online account at least once a year to review the information held by the Teacher’s Pension Scheme.
Increasing this protective shield
We are paying for a pension that we won’t receive for many decades. Therefore, it is hard to feel an urgency to increase our contributions. There are flexibilities within the Teachers’ Pension Scheme that allow you to increase your payment and, in turn, improve the benefits received.
While you might find it hard to think of yourself as old enough to retire, it is easy to imagine a scenario where your partner and children will need the support of your pension if you die. Consequently, you may wish to talk to an independent financial advisor about how you can make the most of your pension benefits.
The content in this article was correct on 28th April 2022. You should not rely on this article to make important financial decisions. Teachers Financial Planning offers advice on pensions for teachers and non-teachers. Please use the contact form below to arrange an informal chat with an advisor and see how we can help you.