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    • cambs1999
    • By cambs1999 14th Mar 17, 5:22 PM
    • 24Posts
    • 0Thanks
    cambs1999
    LGPS had incorrect hours for 8 years
    • #1
    • 14th Mar 17, 5:22 PM
    LGPS had incorrect hours for 8 years 14th Mar 17 at 5:22 PM
    I have a LGPS scheme.

    I worked full time for the first 4 years then 2 days a week for 8 years then 3 days a week ongoing.

    I recently noticed on the online breakdown that they had me as full time for the 8 years I was working 2 days a week. I contacted them and it's now been corrected but leaves me with a current pension worth around £3,000 less a year.

    Is there anyone I can complain to about this? Either my employer or LGPS. I can't believe that it was missed when I went from full time to part time 12 years ago & then again when I increased up to 3 days a week 4 years ago.

    I understand that LGPS don't really look into the details as they take the information form my employer but surely someone would have noticed that my contributions each month were much lower.

    Also would it have ever been spotted by LGPS - I assume that it would have been if I ever left my employer or when I came to retire but by this time it would have left it too late to do anything about making up the shortfall.

    Thanks for any help you can offer.
Page 1
    • PensionTech
    • By PensionTech 14th Mar 17, 5:25 PM
    • 710 Posts
    • 926 Thanks
    PensionTech
    • #2
    • 14th Mar 17, 5:25 PM
    • #2
    • 14th Mar 17, 5:25 PM
    What detriment have you suffered, compared to what would have happened if their records had been correct in the first place?
    I am a Technical Analyst at a third-party pension administration company. My job is to interpret rules and legislation and provide technical guidance, but I am not a lawyer or a qualified advisor of any kind and anything I say on these boards is my opinion only.
    • Silvertabby
    • By Silvertabby 14th Mar 17, 6:11 PM
    • 1,792 Posts
    • 2,203 Thanks
    Silvertabby
    • #3
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:11 PM
    • #3
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:11 PM
    DId you not notice that your hours were wrong on your annual benefit statements?
    • GunJack
    • By GunJack 14th Mar 17, 6:17 PM
    • 9,833 Posts
    • 7,324 Thanks
    GunJack
    • #4
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:17 PM
    • #4
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:17 PM
    CS and LGPS usually work part-time out as x% of full-time equivalent service (so your 8 yrs of 2 days a week would be 2/5 x 8=3.2 FTE, so them correcting the error is good for you, if the error had come out after the pension was in payment they would have clawed it back by reducing your pension payments until the error was repaid..... better to sort it out now than then....
    Last edited by GunJack; 14-03-2017 at 6:25 PM.
    ......Gettin' There, Wherever There is......
    • cambs1999
    • By cambs1999 14th Mar 17, 6:18 PM
    • 24 Posts
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    cambs1999
    • #5
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:18 PM
    • #5
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:18 PM
    I've looked at various previous benefit statements from 2013/2014/2015 & 2016 and none of them give a breakdown of my hours.
    • Muscle750
    • By Muscle750 14th Mar 17, 6:24 PM
    • 894 Posts
    • 272 Thanks
    Muscle750
    • #6
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:24 PM
    • #6
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:24 PM
    So basically you worked part time and now expect a full pension or at least alot more than theyve adjusted it to. Surely you would have noticed this error by statements etc .
    • cambs1999
    • By cambs1999 14th Mar 17, 6:31 PM
    • 24 Posts
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    cambs1999
    • #7
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:31 PM
    • #7
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:31 PM
    That's interesting GunJack, thanks.

    One benefit statements mentions divided by 80 so I assume I was to work out from this that it was wrong as it should have been divided by a lower number?

    I would always have told them it was wrong as I would rather know now that's its correct and quite rightly I wouldn't want any future payments reduced and I would have owed them a fortune!

    It's just quite depressing to realise that my pension has dropped by £3000 a year.

    Thanks again.
    • cambs1999
    • By cambs1999 14th Mar 17, 6:38 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    cambs1999
    • #8
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:38 PM
    • #8
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:38 PM
    No of course I don't expect a pension based on working full time! I haven't mentioned anywhere that I expect more money just whether I could complain to anyone - if they got mine wrong how many others could be wrong. I work for a large local authority.
    I'm just a bit miffed that my employer got it wrong thats all.

    I've said that I've looked at various pension statements and there wasn't any mention of my hours etc - GunJacks post has made me think that maybe I should've realised from the fact that it mentioned divided by 80 that this was the wrong calculation - however if you know nothing about pensions it is easy to miss this.

    The pension has been correct for the last 4 years and my old pension statements have very basic information.
    • hyubh
    • By hyubh 14th Mar 17, 6:59 PM
    • 1,940 Posts
    • 1,453 Thanks
    hyubh
    • #9
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:59 PM
    • #9
    • 14th Mar 17, 6:59 PM
    I contacted them and it's now been corrected but leaves me with a current pension worth around £3,000 less a year.
    Originally posted by cambs1999
    You never had the higher pension in the first place though. Typically annual benefit statements include a disclaimer saying that the figures are correct for the data held, please check and query your employer or the administrator if the service details are wrong.

    Is there anyone I can complain to about this? Either my employer or LGPS. I can't believe that it was missed when I went from full time to part time 12 years ago & then again when I increased up to 3 days a week 4 years ago.
    The typical mid-sized LGPS fund will have around 50K active memberships, working for around 300 employers (and therefore appearing across around 300 annual returns) in total. Around half the memberships will be in relation to low-paying, fairly short-term, part time employments, sometimes concurrent. In other words, there's a lot of data to validated, so only basic checks will be done as an annual process.

    I understand that LGPS don't really look into the details as they take the information form my employer
    Indeed, it's the employer responsibility to provide the correct data.

    surely someone would have noticed that my contributions each month were much lower.
    Full monthly reconciliations are currently very rare because of the hassle. (A good proportion of employers would just refuse to provide the additional data required.)

    Also would it have ever been spotted by LGPS
    Yes, when you leave, the employer will have to complete a leaver form for the administrator that (amongst other things) will very likely confirm your hours history (given it wasn't systematically confirmed with the introduction of the CARE scheme), amongst various other details.

    I assume that it would have been if I ever left my employer or when I came to retire but by this time it would have left it too late to do anything about making up the shortfall.
    What you did - checking your pension details and contacting the administrator when found wrong - was the correct thing to do. You didn't con yourself out of extra pension, you just helped yourself get an accurate account of your benefits to date sooner than otherwise.
    • cambs1999
    • By cambs1999 14th Mar 17, 7:05 PM
    • 24 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    cambs1999
    Thanks hybuh. That's very helpful.

    It's everything I knew really but feel better now someone else has confirmed it.
    • hyubh
    • By hyubh 14th Mar 17, 7:55 PM
    • 1,940 Posts
    • 1,453 Thanks
    hyubh
    Thanks hybuh. That's very helpful.

    It's everything I knew really but feel better now someone else has confirmed it.
    Originally posted by cambs1999
    While we're about it, other aspects -

    - If your employer is the same organisation doing the scheme admin, it's quite possible that less checks are made on a monthly and annual basis than for members with other employers. This might be for various reasons (the 'internal' employer is more trusted, has more data exchange automation in place, etc.).

    - Before leaving, another common point of proper checking is if you (or your employer) were to request a formal estimate for whatever reason.

    - Since the CARE scheme started, there no longer a basic need to collect part time hour details, at least if you don't/didn't come under the 'underpin'. As such, if the administrator hasn't systematically 'closed off' service histories, then there won't be much in the post-2014 annual return data to prompt them before a leaver (or estimate) form comes in.

    That said, I don't actually think it's unreasonable for you to have expected your hours changes to have been picked up in some form already. Indeed, that's the flip side of my last point above, regarding the CARE scheme - if service histories for pre-2008 years aren't systematically checked now, it's going to mean a far number currently wrong are going to still be wrong in potentially decades time, when old payroll records may no longer exist (pensions data and systems in LGPS-land are very stable, employee payroll data and systems rather less so).
    • Silvertabby
    • By Silvertabby 14th Mar 17, 9:27 PM
    • 1,792 Posts
    • 2,203 Thanks
    Silvertabby
    Payroll data will have to be kept for up to 13 years - it may be needed for best year figures for the final salary link.

    Something as drastic as the OP's change from whole time to part time should have been picked up on the year end return 12 years ago, but may have been masked by fluctuating pensionable extras? The increase from 2.5 days (?) to 3 days would have been less likely to throw up a 'flag' as the increase in contributions could have registered as a pay increase.

    CARE was introduced in 2014, so hours histories for service before then are still being checked when the member asks for a quote or leaves - but as time goes on I can see this becoming harder and harder to monitor. Yes, the responsibility for producing the correct data lies with the employer, but it's the duty of the LGPS administrator to ensure that the correct pension benefits are paid. I've looked at records in the past and, although they have agreed with the data supplied by the employer, they just didn't feel right so I'd ask the employer to check their figures again. Sometimes the change was to the benefit of the pension member, sometimes it wasn't, but it was my job to check.
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