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Maintaining contributions

Public service pension schemes need to have procedures and processes that enable you to effectively monitor pension contributions, resolve payment issues and report payment failures.

Key points

  • The scheme manager should produce and maintain a payment schedule or contributions monitoring record.
  • Check that contributions are paid to your scheme.
  • Set up a process that you can use to identify and manage contribution payment failures.
  • Make sure you report payment failures of ‘material significance’ to us.

Monitoring payments

You should have a process to check that contributions are paid to your public service scheme on time and in full. You should apply a risk-based approach to identify situations which present a higher risk of late payments occurring and those which are likely to be of 'material significance' to us.

Managing overdue contributions

You should be able to assess whether a late payment has occurred. Where you identify a late payment, you should follow a process to resolve it quickly. This may include:

  • carrying out an investigation to why the late payment has occurred
  • contacting and discussing the late payment with the employer
  • rectifying the late payment and taking steps to avoid recurrence

You should attempt to recover contributions within 90 days of when the payment was due and keep a record of your investigation and communications between you and the employer.

Reporting payment failures

Your scheme must report payment failures that are likely to be of 'material significance' to us as soon as you can – usually within 10 working days. You should report to us using our online service Exchange.

Online service

Use Exchange to report payment failures.

A late payment is likely to be of material significance where it was caused by:

  • the employer not being willing or able to pay contributions
  • possible dishonesty or misuse of assets or contributions
  • fraudulent evasion of the duty to pay contributions
  • the employer having inadequate procedures
  • contributions having been outstanding for more than 90 days

Public Service toolkit online learning

You can learn about the requirement to monitor member contributions and how to manage overdue contributions in the 'Maintaining member contributions' course. You must log in or sign up to use the Public Service toolkit.

Go to the Public Service toolkit

Check your contributions processes

Use our checklist to evaluate how effectively your scheme manages contributions:

Detailed guidance

'Maintaining contributions' section of the public service code of practice.