The Merchant Navy Officers Pension Fund ("MNOPF") started on 1 January 1938 and for over 60 years has provided generous benefits designed to meet the needs of ship's officers within the many changes in UK pensions law and practice.
At the outset, funds built up in what is now known as the Old Section. From time to time, the Trustees have been able to award increases to benefits from the Old Section out of any surplus disclosed at regular actuarial valuations.
On 5 April 1978, the Old Section was closed and it is kept separate. For service from 6 April 1978, the New Section was set up. It provided a high level of pension on normal retirement (1/40th of average revalued pensionable salary for each year counting) but with no guaranteed increases in payment.
Increases in payment to pensions earned under the New Section between April 1978 and April 1997 have been granted from time to time. This has occurred at the Trustees' discretion when the Fund's actuary has advised that it was appropriate to use part of any surplus disclosed at the time of an actuarial valuation for this purpose.
For service from 1 April 1997, the rate at which pension was earned each year came down to 1/60th of average revalued pensionable salary. However, this pension carried guaranteed increases after each year of payment in line with retail prices or 5% if less.
Following an actuarial valuation at April 1999, it was found that the New Section showed a deficit. For service from 1 October 2000, the amount of pension earned each year came down to 1/80th of average revalued pensionable salary. This pension still carries guaranteed increases of up to 5% each year.