When you are thinking of retiring, it’s best to have all the information you need to hand and know what to expect, so we've provided this informal guide to voluntarily retiring.

If your retirement is going to be on the grounds of flexible retirement, redundancy, business efficiency or ill health, the process and your considerations, timescales will be different.

Start planning

In order to check what you'll need in retirement, and if your pension(s) from our scheme will be enough, you can check your latest annual benefit statement and enter the values into our pension calculator to project what your pension(s) might be, including early payment reductions, if you retire on certain dates.

If you're considering early retirement, you can visit our voluntary retirement and flexible retirement pages to understand your options.

We also suggest that you investigate what other pensions you might have payable from other companies or organisations, check what your state entitlement will be, and when you can start claiming your state benefits (known as your state retirement age).

When you have decided on your retirement date

Once you have considered all your options and you have decided on a date to retire, you will need to talk to your manager.

It is best to start by checking the notice period your contract requires you to give if you are considering voluntary retirement.

If you are considering taking flexible retirement, you will need to speak with your employer to establish if they can approve your request, and if they can, you will need to ask what their process is regarding your ongoing position.

Once you are certain of your retirement date, you must put your wishes in writing to your employer.

When your retirement date has been set

When you have set your retirement date, your employer will let us know. If you receive the same pay each month, your employer can tell us 4 to 6 weeks before you retire. If you receive variable pay however, your employer will let us know after your final pay has been processed.

We suggest that it's best for you to plan for any delays that may be experienced by the scheme in receiving your final data from your employer, as this may have an impact on when you receive your first pension payment.

We'll work out your pension benefits

Once we've received your leaving information from your employer, we’ll write to you with a letter entitled ‘provisional details’ of your pension benefits at your selected retirement date.

If you are taking your benefits early, the initial letter includes:

  • a provisional reduced and unreduced comparison of your pension benefits
  • a bank details form
  • a 'pension benefits option form', which is a declaration of your decision to take reduced benefits early, or wait and defer you pension benefits until you want them, but we must start paying your pension benefits by age 75
  • a lifetime allowance declaration form
  • a lump sum conversion option form (including any AVCs)
  • a personal details form (which asks for a form of identification, and your current marital status)

Please note: The sooner you return this information, the sooner we can pay or defer your pension benefits as per your wishes.

Confirmation letter

If you have chosen to take payment of your pension benefits, when we receive your reply we will write to you and:

  • if your letter is dated after the 15th of the month, your first pension payment is likely to be made to your chosen bank account at the end of the following month
  • your pension will always be paid on the last working day of the month
  • you should receive payment of any due lump sums within 10 working days from the date your benefits become payable, or 10 working days from the date you receive the letter
  • provide a certificate of lifetime allowance from Derbyshire Pension Fund

Once you are in receipt of your pension benefits, you are classed as a pensioner and will need to refer to the pensioner member section for information that will affect you.