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Benefits paid in the event of your death

Published 05/06/2019 13:13:00, by Marina Maher

Benefits paid in the event of your death (AFPS15) AFPS15 Booklet

In the event of your death, your eligible dependants’ will receive benefits that may consist of a tax-free lump sum (in some circumstances) and a taxable pension for life. If you have not made a nomination and also have no dependants, the lump sum will be paid to your estate. The type of benefits paid will depend on when you die. The benefits described in this chapter are only available to the eligible dependants of members of AFPS 15. 

If your marriage or civil partnership took place within 6 months of your death, the award of a pension to your surviving spouse or civil partner will not be automatic. The Scheme Administrator will examine the circumstances of these cases to ensure that the marriage or civil partnership was not entered into purely for financial gain.

If your surviving spouse or civil partner is more than 12 years younger than you, their pension will be reduced to take account of the fact that the pension can be expected to be paid over a longer period.

Nomination for Lump Sum Death Benefits 
A tax-free lump sum is payable in the event of your death and you can decide who should receive it. You may nominate one or more individuals; one incorporated or unincorporated body i.e. a charity or social club; or a combination of one or more individual and one 

incorporated or unincorporated body to receive your death benefit lump sum only. You cannot nominate someone to receive your pension. Your nomination can specify how payments are to be divided between two or more individuals; or one or more individuals and one incorporated or unincorporated body.

Nominations must be made in writing to DBS Veterans UK by completing a Nomination Form (AFPS Form 2) available from the DBS Veterans UK website using the links provided in Chapter 17, Further Information. 

If you die without making a valid nomination, your lump sum will normally be paid to your spouse, civil partner, eligible partner or eligible children as detailed above. If there is no such person, the lump sum will be paid to your estate. 

Even where a spouse, civil partner or eligible partner exists, a valid nomination will take precedence. It is your responsibility to review your nomination and to ensure that it is up to date and remains valid, especially when there has been a change in personal circumstances i.e. marriage, divorce, dissolution of a civil partnership, separation, change of eligible partner, or becoming a widow(er). You may revoke or alter a nomination at any time by submitting a further Nomination Form to DBS Veterans UK.

Eligible Partner
A cohabiting partner may be eligible to receive a pension providing that it can be demonstrated that a substantial and exclusive relationship existed and that there was no legal reason preventing you from getting married or forming a civil partnership.

Eligible Child
An eligible child is defined as a child who is under 18 years of age and who was financially dependent upon you on the date of your death. Additionally, those under the age of 23 who are in full-time education or vocational training are also eligible, as are children, of any age, who are unable to obtain gainful employment due to a physical or mental impairment.

Death in Service
You must have vested (completed 2 or more calendar years of qualifying service in any Armed Forces Pension Scheme) for your dependants to receive any pension, however, a death in service lump sum will be paid whether you have vested or not.   

Should you die in service, for any reason, your nominee, spouse, civil partner or eligible partner will receive a tax-free lump sum of 4 times your final pensionable earnings. No other lump sum is payable from service completed as a member of a legacy pension scheme. If there is no surviving nominee, spouse, civil partner or eligible partner, all eligible children will share the lump sum. If there is no other eligible person, the lump sum will be paid to your estate.

In addition to the lump sum, your nominee, spouse, civil partner or eligible partner will receive an immediate pension paid for life. The immediate pension paid to a dependant following a death in service is calculated in the same manner as a Tier 3 ill-health pension. The spouse, civil partner or eligible partner then receive 62.5% of this award, while eligible children will share the remaining 37.5%, subject to a maximum of 25% per child. If there is no spouse, civil partner or eligible partner, all eligible children will share 100% of the pension, subject to a maximum of 33.3% per child. A former spouse, from whom you are divorced, or a former civil partner, (if you have legally dissolved the civil partnership) is not eligible to receive a pension.

Death in Deferment
If you leave the Armed Forces having qualified for a Deferred Pension, but you die before that pension comes into payment at State Pension Age, your nominee, spouse, civil partner or eligible partner will receive a tax-free lump sum of 3 times your pension. Your spouse, civil partner or eligible partner will also receive an immediate pension equivalent to 62.5% of your pension. Eligible children will share the remaining 37.5%, subject to a maximum of 25% per child. If there is no spouse, civil partner or eligible partner, all eligible children will share 100% of the pension, subject to a maximum of 33.3% per child. 

If you have accrued pension rights to any of the legacy pension schemes, your spouse, civil partner or eligible partner will receive a percentage of each pension as shown below (increased in line with the Consumer Price Index), which will be paid immediately.

Death in Retirement 
If you die whilst in receipt of a pension, your spouse, civil partner or eligible partner will receive 62.5% of that pension. Dependant children will share the remaining 37.5% subject to a maximum of 25% per child. If there is no surviving spouse, civil partner or eligible partner, all eligible children will share 100% of the pension, subject to a maximum of 33% per child. 

There will also be a tax-free lump sum equal to 5 times your pension, less the combined total of all pension payments and lump sum that you had already received since retirement. Eligible children will share the 100% of the lump sum if there is no nominee, surviving spouse, civil partner or eligible partner.


Legacy Pension Scheme Benefits
Armed Forces Pension Scheme 1975 (AFPS 75), Non-Regular Permanent Staff Pension Scheme (NRPS) and Full Time Reserve Service Pension Scheme 1997 (FTRSPS 97): Your spouse or civil partner may receive a tax-free lump sum plus an immediate pension equivalent to 50% of your pension. Unmarried eligible partners can be awarded a pension if your death is attributable and they qualify for a payment under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme. Eligible children will share the remaining 50%, subject to a maximum of 25% per child. If there is no spouse or civil partner, all eligible children will share 100% of the pension, subject to a maximum of 33.3% per child.

Armed Forces Pension Scheme 2005 (AFPS 05) and Reserve Forces Pension Scheme 2005 (RFPS 05): Your spouse, civil partner or eligible partner may receive a tax-free lump sum plus an immediate pension equivalent to 62.5% of your pension. Eligible children will share the remaining 37.5%, subject to a maximum of 25% per eligible child. If there is no spouse, civil partner or eligible partner, all eligible children will share 100% of the pension, subject to a maximum of 33.3% per eligible child.  

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