Welcome to the fourth edition of our Digital Newsletter which provides an update on the 2015 Remedy (McCloud).

Read all about it!

Lots has been happening since our last edition and we are keen to continue to keep you updated. This Newsletter pulls together information on current issues that may affect you. We are also keen to receive feedback from you. Tell us what you think by completing a quick survey at the bottom of this newsletter webpage.

But first, an introduction from the Comms Team:

The 2015 Retrospective Remedy (McCloud) legislation came into effect on 1 October 2023. Depending on your circumstances, you can find out what this means to you by using our new enhanced ‘Am I affected?’ tool and the Remedy Benefits Illustrator. Scroll down to find out more.

Are you affected by the 2015 Remedy (McCloud)?       

Approximately 40,000 current and former Civil Servants are affected by the 2015 Remedy. Are you one of them?

We have made improvements to our already popular 'Am I Affected?' tool. You can find out more on how you will be affected depending on your circumstances. You will also be signposted to further information on Partial Retirements and our newly developed Remedy Benefits Illustrator.

Check out the link below.

2015 Remedy 'Am I affected? tool 

You won’t be asked to share any personal details or need any specific information to hand – the tool will guide you.  

Tell us what you think of the new enhanced ‘Am I affected?’ tool by completing the brief survey within – it would be great to hear your views.

How am I affected?

Remedy Benefits Illustrator

Back in November we launched our new Remedy Benefits Illustrator tool for active and deferred members of the Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS) Pension Scheme. This tool was commissioned and developed by the Government Actuaries Department (GAD) to give you an indication of what your remedy benefits could look like.

We have now improved it further by adding information videos so take a look, but remember the illustrator is not intended to provide you with financial advice. Please ensure you read and understand the terms of service and assumptions used.

However, please note, on retirement, you will still receive an expanded retirement pack which outlines your retirement options.

Remedy Benefits Illustrator

What to Expect?

Our last newsletter provided an animated video on how Remedy may affect you as you approach your retirement or how this may affect those of you who have already retired and are in receipt of pension benefits. So, in case you missed it first time round we have included it again.

Further information on what to expect, if you are retiring, is provided in a dedicated web page 2015 Remedy (McCloud) Retirement Quotations.

Ill-Health Retirement – What if I am affected by Remedy?

Some members retire because their health prevents them from being able to continue working. Applications to retire due to ill-health are carefully examined based on the member’s health condition and the role they are in, as well as the ill-health retirement rules or regulations of the scheme in place at the time of application.

If you are affected by the 2015 Remedy (McCloud) and applied for ill-health retirement during the remedy period (1 April 2015 – 31 March 2022), whether the application was successful or not, your application may be re-assessed.

This re-assessment is to understand whether any member who applied for ill-health retirement under their existing pension scheme, would have been eligible for ill-health benefits under their alternative pension scheme. A re-assessment will not be appropriate for all categories of ill-health retirement applications and please be assured that if your case requires a re-assessment, you will be contacted to provide your consent in advance.

If you have already been awarded ill-health retirement, please don’t worry, your award will not be reversed because of the re-assessment.

Work continues to progress in the background to ensure we address the needs of this group of members.

We will make sure that further details of the process and timelines are provided on the Ill-Health Retirement - Members affected by Remedy page on our website  when they become available.

Key Dates and Jargon Buster during the Remedy Process

We know the world of pensions can be complicated and difficult to understand as we progress through the Remedy process. As we implement the Remedy, we will be referring to a variety of different terms, for example 'Deferred Choice Underpin (DCU)'. So, what do we mean by this?

Deferred Choice Underpin (DCU) - The Government’s solution to remedy eligible public service pension scheme members by providing a choice of legacy or reformed scheme benefits for the seven-year remedy period when they retire.

Another term you may see or hear us use is RSS. This stands for Remediable Service Statement and is the term used for the statement and associated documentation that will be issued and will contain the necessary information and calculations to enable you to make a fully informed remedy choice.  

There are several key dates already in place to help ensure that the Remedy is completed as quickly as possible. These are listed on the Key Remedy Dates and Jargon Buster page on the website and will be updated as progress is made.

Further Information

A full range of resources can be accessed at the McCloud Judgment and 2015 Remedy page on the website.

This webpage has a wealth of information including additional animated videos, explaining what the McCloud 2015 Remedy is and what to expect. More content is under development, so we encourage you to keep checking this webpage for further updates and newsletters.

Other News

Annual Allowance and Pensions Savings Statements

A new 2015 Remedy Annual Allowance Project team has been established. This team will be focussing on recalculating Annual Allowance and Pension Input Amounts for members who are affected by the 2015 Remedy, from the years 2015/16 until 2021/22 under their legacy scheme regulations, and 2022/23 under alpha regulations. This work is required as members’ service has been rolled back into their Legacy scheme (Classic, Classic Plus, Premium or Nuvos). The rollback of this service could lead to changes in Pension Input Amounts (PIA).

Members who have previously breached their Annual Allowance threshold in any year since 2015/16 or are now found to be breaching this after recalculation, should receive their revised Pension Saving Statements by October 2024 and should use this information to notify HMRC of their updated positions by 31 January 2025.

For most members, no tax adjustment will be required. However, a minority of members may see changes to their individual tax situation. Further guidance on what the outcomes of these recalculations means for members and what options are available to them, will be provided in due course.

Meanwhile affected members can visit our Tax and Pension Savings Statements Remedy FAQs for further information.

Is your Death Benefit Nomination up to date?

As always, please remember the importance of ensuring you have an up-to-date Death Benefit Nomination.

The NICS Pension Schemes do not only provide pension benefits for you but in certain circumstances they also provide benefits after your death to the people you care about. You can complete a Death Benefit Nomination form to confirm who you want to be considered to receive any lump sum benefit. This could be a family member, a friend, a charity, a business or any other organisation.

As a member of the alpha pension scheme, you can name as many nominees as you wish and choose how to split the lump sum between them. More information and forms can be found on the Death Benefit Nomination webpage.

You can also check if you have completed a nomination and view your nomination details by logging onto the NICS Pension Portal.

Coming up

Over the coming months, we will be sharing more information as progress is made as we continue to implement the 2015 Remedy.

Share your feedback on this newsletter.

We hope you enjoyed this edition of our Digital Newsletter!

Tell us what you thought of it using this quick survey.

Related articles

Back to top