Single Scheme Superannuation Benefits

(Post 2013)

The new Single Superannuation pension scheme was introduced on 1st January 2013 across the public service for all new entrants.

There are over 100,000 members of this scheme across all departments of which 80% are members of the Health and Education sectors.

Similar to the old Pre 2013 Scheme, Employees are entitled to:

1. Superannuation Pension

2. Death-in-Service Benefits

3. Sick Pay Entitlements

1. Superannuation Pension Scheme

The pension is a Defined Benefit scheme. Employees are entitled to;

  • a tax free lump sum and

  • a pension income

Employee’s benefits are based on career average earnings and work pattern. Benefits are accrued annually based on earnings in that year. In other words you ‘bank’ your earned pension benefits into your pension pot each year.

  • Normal Retirement age is the same as age for Contributory State Pension (68).

  • The maximum retirement age is 70.

  • Benefits increase annually in line with the Consumer Price Index/Inflation (CPI)

  • Cost neutral early retirement is access-able from age 55.

Single Scheme Pension Calculations are as follows:

Tax Free Lump Sum Calculations = Gross Pensionable Salary x 3.75%

Pension Calculations= Gross Pensionable Salary x 0.58% (up to salary threshold of €48,000 approx) PLUS Gross Pensionable Salary x 1.25% (salary earned over the threshold of €48,000)

  • Please note that both tax free lump sum and pension calculations are brought in line with inflation (CPI) from year 2 onward.

  • These calculations earned consecutively each year and ‘banked’.

  • Each member is entitled to an annual benefit statement with their up to date earned pension calculations.

In addition each A1 public sector is also entitled to the Contributory State Pension of €12912 ( year 2020 approx)

Gross Pensionable Remuneration

The Gross Pensionable Salary/Remuneration is a very important calculation each year for new entrants. The pension benefits are worked out each year and banked into your pension pot. In the old scheme, all of the calculations were complete on the members Final Pensionable Salary. This was more beneficial as all of their service were calculated on a higher salary (the top grade available in that position etc). New Entrants however do not have this luxury as the calculations are completed each year.

The calculation is as follows;

Gross Pensionable Remuneration + Any Pensionable Allowances that are permanent in nature and have been notified to the member as pensionable.

Please note that Net Pensionable Renumeration is (Gross Pensionable Salary/Renumeration – twice the State pension)

Cost Neutral Early Retirement

Subject to employer approval, a scheme member is eligible for Cost Neutral Early Retirement before reaching the Normal Retirement Age.

  • Members must be 55 years of age or older to be eligible to apply.

  • Members must be vested in active employment (deferred members ineligible).

  • Retirement benefits are calculated up to the date of early retirement and actuarial reduced in line with approved actuarial rates.

  • Benefits are reduced permanently to take into account the member age at retirement and the time remaining until the member’s Normal Retirement Age.

Member Contributions

Members of this scheme are deducted the following from their payslips;

3% of their Gross Pensionable Salary/Renumeration plus 3.5% of their Net Pensionable renumeration (Gross Salary – twice the state pension)

Ill Health Early Retirement

  • Active member eligible to retire on medical grounds once eligibility requirements met (e.g. medical assessment, employer approval)

  • Ref: Guidance Note 1 of 2017 and Section 29 of Public Service Pensions (Single Scheme and Other Provisions) Act 2012

  • Benefits payable differ depending on whether member is vested or not

  • Deferred members may be eligible to apply for Ill Health Retirement benefits before the Normal Retirement Age

2. Death-in-Service Benefits

The Life Cover/Death-in-Service is as follows;

  • Twice Gross Pensionable Remuneration in any 12 month period prior to death is paid to the member’s estate. If working part time benefits are based on the - member’s full time rate.

The Spouses pension of the deceased member is as follows;

  • 50% of pension that would have been paid to the deceased if retired on medical grounds at date of death.

  • Please note that the Pension payment ceases the surviving spouse remarries cohabits or enters into a new Civil Partnership.

The Children’s pension is as follows

  • Fraction of Deceased’s Pension Payable.

  • Spouse & 3 or fewer. 1/6th payable per child

  • Spouse & 4 or more. 50% of deceased’s pension divided by number of eligible children & payable per child

  • No spouse & 1 child. 1/3rd of deceased pension

  • No spouse & 2 or more ½ of deceased pension & payable per child

3.Sick Pay Entitlements

Sick Pay Entitlements are the one superannuation entitlement calculated in the same way as the Pre 2013 members. Please Click Here for more information.


Diarmaid Blake and Lorna Egan

Money Maximising Advisors Limited

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