UKAEA Pensions

Skip Navigation

Home Page


Your contributions

As a member of the Combined Pension Scheme you would pay contributions at the rate of 8.2% (10.7% for members of the Principal Non-Industrial Superannuation Scheme) of your pensionable pay if the pensionable pay is £21,000 or more. If your pensionable earnings are between £15,000 and £20,999 your contribution would be 6.5% of pensionable pay. If your pensionable pay is less than 15,000 you would pay 5% of pensionable pay. Contribution rates are determined by the member's full time equivalent rate of pensionable pay.

Members working part time pay contributions on their actual pensionable earnings.  Benefits are calculated on the full time equivalent pensionable pay with an appropriate adjustment to reckonable service. 

Your contributions to the CPS qualify for tax relief . See below for details of the tax position.

The Combined Pension Scheme of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority was formed on 1 July 1997 by merging the Principal Non-Industrial Superannuation Scheme (PNISS) and the Industrial Superannuation Scheme (ISS) for members employed by United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority, British Nuclear Fuels plc and some employees of the Health Protection Agency, who were formerly employed by the National Radiological Protection Board. With effect from 1 April 2005 membership of the scheme extended to employees of the Civil Nuclear Police Authority.

The Earnings Cap

The Finance Act 1989 introduced an earnings cap for pension contributions and benefits.

If you joined the UK Atomic Energy Authority pension schemes on or after 1 June 1989 or choose to be considered as though you had joined after this date, your contributions and benefits would be based on earnings which are not more than the maximum level of earnings set by the government each year. Any earnings in excess of the “earnings cap” are ignored for the pension purposes. For the 2018/19 tax year, the "earnings cap" is set at £160,800.

Does your employer pay anything?

Your employer pays a contribution towards the cost of providing your benefits from the Authority Schemes at a rate recommended by the Scheme's actuary.

The Tax Position
Tax Relief on Benefits and Contributions

Tax relief is available on the following:

  • The pension lump sum payable at normal retirement
  • Death Benefit lump sums
  • Member’s contributions, to either the UK Atomic Energy Authority final salary schemes or the AVC Scheme or Shift Pay Pension Plan, within HM Revenue and Customs limits
  • Pensions are treated as income and taxed under the PAYE system
National Insurance Contributions - Contracting-out Arrangements

Prior to 6 April 2016 the Scheme was contracted-out of the Second State Pension (S2P), and as a result members paid lower national insurance contributions.

From 6 April 2016 with the introduction of the Single Tier State Pension, contracting out arrangements ceased and members of the UKAEA Pension Schemes pay the full rate national insurance contributions.