AP is a flexible way of increasing your Scheme pension if you’re an active member.
It allows you to choose to buy extra annual pension, in today's terms. You can see how much the purchase will cost using the AP calculator.
There’s an age limit to apply for AP.
If you’re a member of the 2008 Section or 2015 Scheme, you must make the application and complete all payments before your Normal Pension Age (NPA).
The NPA for the 2008 Section is 65 and for the 2015 Scheme it’s your State Pension Age, or age 65, if later.
If you’re a member of the 1995 Section, you would need to apply before your chosen payable age. This could be age 60 or 65 depending on what age you chose to take your pension.
You can buy a set amount of annual pension for an agreed amount of contributions. You can choose to pay either as a lump sum or as a regular payment for a minimum of 1 year or up to a maximum of 20 years.
AP is protected against inflation by being index linked both before and after retirement. You can choose whether your AP is for you or also provides benefits for your dependants in the event of your death.
The minimum amount of AP you can buy in the 1995 Scheme and 2008 Section is £250 and the maximum amount is £5,000.
The 2015 Scheme has a higher limit of £7,299, which is reviewed each year.
The limits operate independently, as they’re two separate schemes. If you’ve already bought £5,000 AP in the 1995 Scheme or 2008 Section you could potentially buy a further £7,299 if you move to the 2015 Scheme.
View further information about AP.
Apply for AP
Following the increase in RPI/CPI the maximum amount you can apply for is £7299 in the 2015 Scheme.
Applying for £6,501 to £7,299
To apply for AP, you must email email@example.com directly. You must include:
- your NI or SD number
- amount of AP you would like to purchase
- whether you wish to pay by lump sum or instalments.
A calculation will be completed and sent to you.
Applying for up to £6,500
The AP1 calculator can only be used for AP up to £6,500:
- Open the AP calculator.
- Select the ‘create form’ button. This will give you an AP1 form pre-populated with the quote details to print off. Check your browser allow pop-ups so the form can be generated. If you’re having issues, see article I am having problems creating the Additional Pension form on the NHS Pensions website calculator - what can I do?
- Print the AP1 form and fill in the rest of the details requested in Part A. If you’re having problems completing the form, ask your employer to help you.
- Sign and date the form. Give it to your NHS employer within 6 weeks of creating the application. If you do not, another calculation will be needed.
If you have a birthday between performing the calculation and submitting your application, a new calculation would be needed.
Your NHS Employer will fill in Part B and forward your application to NHS Pensions.
NHS Pensions aim to respond within 4 weeks.
After submitting your application
If your application is accepted and you’re paying by a one-off lump sum, an AP3 acceptance letter will be sent to you and your employer.
You have one month from the issue of the AP3 to pay the lump sum to your employer, otherwise the application will be rejected.
Your employer will need to email firstname.lastname@example.org within one month of the AP3 acceptance letter being issued, to confirm when the payment has been received. If your employer does not send this email, your application will be rejected.
If your application is accepted and you’re paying by monthly instalments, an AP4 acceptance letter will be sent to you and your employer for monthly payments to begin.
If your application is rejected, an AP5 rejection letter will be sent to you and your employer to confirm the AP application has been rejected.