Paying into IWDC

Life's big changes

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What happens if you take maternity - or paternity - leave? How could your pension be affected by a relationship break-up? Or are you thinking about part-time work? Read some examples of how your benefits could be affected by life's big changes below.

Taking leave

If you get maternity, paternity, additional paternity, family or adoption leave pay, your contributions are based on what you are earning at that time, but the contributions paid to IWDC are based on your normal rate of pay. Your employer will continue to pay contributions based on your pensionable pay. They will also pay the difference between your normal contributions and your actual contributions. You can learn more about how these life changes may affect your pension in the Guide to maternity, paternity, parental and adoption leave (PM319)

Ill health

Serious illness is stressful enough without having to worry about your finances. However, if you have to stop working through ill health, you may be able to use your Personal Retirement Account to provide an income before your Normal Minimum Pension Age.

The Trustee must receive medical evidence from a registered practitioner that you are, and will continue to be, unable to carry out your job.

If you suffer from a serious illness and your life expectancy is less than 12 months, you may be able to take all your benefits as a lump sum. Please contact for more information.

Divorce or dissolution

Separating from a partner is always a challenging time, and your Personal Retirement Account is likely to be considered along with other assets when financial settlements are worked out.

Two types of settlements can be awarded through Court orders:

  •  Pension Sharing – your ex-spouse or civil partner can be awarded part of your transfer value through a pension sharing order.
  •  Pension Earmarking – your ex-spouse or civil partner can be awarded some of your benefits through an ‘earmarking’ order. These can only be paid when your benefits start.

More information can be found in Your member’s guide and our FAQs

Switching from full-time to part-time work

If you work part-time, your contributions and those from your employer are reduced according to the amount of hours you work

If you have a query about any of the above, please email

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