Taking my AVC Extra Benefits

When to take your AVC Extra benefits

If you are under age 55, then your benefits from AVC Extra must be taken at the same time as your benefits from the Fund and BRASS. However, they will be paid separately.

If you are over age 55 then you don’t have to take your benefits from AVC Extra at the same time and can choose to leave them in the Fund for a while if you wish. However, you must still take your AVC Extra benefits by your 75th birthday.

How to take your AVC Extra benefits

Your benefits with AVC Extra are treated differently to your main Fund benefits. And are kept to one side in your Personal Retirement Account (PRA).

When you retire, up to 25% of your PRA can be taken as a tax-free lump sum.

You then have a number of options regarding what to do with the rest.  This includes:

  • taking it a bit at a time. This is known as drawdown 
  • getting a regular, secure income, known as an annuity
  • taking all of the money as a cash.  We call this total encashment

You can find more information about all the options available to you at btppensions.co.uk (under Resources - Read As You Need guides - Retirement options for defined contribution members)’.

Getting an annuity or drawdown

The British Transport Police Force Superannuation Fund (BTPFSF) will already give you a pension for life and a lump sum when you retire.

It does not directly offer drawdown or annuity as an option and so this would require you to transfer your PRA to another provider.

This can be done, completely independently to your main Fund benefits, which would stay within the BTPFSF.

The Trustee is partnering with Legal and General Investment Management (LGIM) to offer members access to a drawdown arrangement, with preferential fees, that are not available elsewhere. You can find more information about this arrangement here 

You are still free to shop around with other drawdown providers and would also need to shop around for an annuity if this is your preferred option. The Money Advice Service offers a comparison tool to help find the right provider for you. You can use that for free  here, or you can speak to a financial adviser to get them to search the marketplace for you

Getting help and advice

 If you are considering transferring BRASS or your main Fund benefits, either now or in the future, we strongly recommend you seek independent financial advice.

This is required by law if your pension is valued at more than £30,000 but it could still be beneficial if your pot is worth less than that. 

Liverpool Victoria (LV) has been chosen as the official partner to give BTPFSF members access to financial advice. LV can be contacted on 0800 023 4187.   

You are still free to choose your own Independent Financial Adviser. You can find an IFA in your area at unbiased.co.uk.