Transferring your pension
You can transfer your MNOPF benefits to another registered pension scheme up to 12 months before your Normal Pension Age. It may still be possible to transfer after this date, but only with the agreement of the Trustee. Currently, the Trustee will allow transfers up to age 63.
The transfer value is the value (or “cash equivalent”) of the benefits you are entitled to when you leave the MNOPF. It is calculated using a basis agreed by the Trustee after taking advice from the MNOPF’s Actuary. The transfer value amount may vary from time to time because of market conditions when you transfer.
You can get your current value of your benefits (your transfer value) in the MNOPF by contacting myMNOPFpension and asking for a Transfer Value Statement.
Once you transfer, you will no longer be entitled to any defined MNOPF benefits and no benefits would be paid to your spouse, civil partner and dependants in the event of your death. It would be up to you to buy similar benefits, if available, under the new scheme.
Because the transfer is of an amount of money equivalent to the value of the benefits within the MNOPF, and not a transfer of services, the benefits your transfer value will be able to “buy” under your new scheme are not guaranteed to match those within the MNOPF.
Your defined benefit MNOPF pension is a very valuable income for life, both for you and your spouse. It is important that you consider your options very carefully before transferring to another scheme. Under current legislation, if your transfer value is £30,000 or more, you must receive financial advice before making any final decisions. You can find details of advisers at www.unbiased.co.uk and more on how to choose one at www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk. You can check to see if an adviser is registered on the Financial Conduct Authority register at www.fca.org.uk/register/
You should be aware that there are likely to be fees and charges to pay if you transfer, both for independent advice and under the new pension arrangement. You should consider these costs carefully before you make a decision to transfer.
Pension transfer fraud, also known as pensions liberation, is on the increase. This is a scam where pension scheme members are offered the chance to release the value of their pension in exchange for a cash lump sum or a loan. You can find out more about pension fraud here.