How can I take my BRASS benefits?

If you have paid into BRASS, then typically you must take these benefits at the same time as your main Fund benefits.

However, you could take your BRASS benefits earlier, or later, if you transfer them to another arrangement.

Taking your BRASS benefits at the same time as your Fund benefits

When you take your benefits, the value of your BRASS Account is used to buy you extra pension in the Fund.

You must then take the equivalent of what was in your BRASS Account as a cash lump sum, before your regular pension payments start.

With this option, you can continue paying into BRASS, right up until the time you’re ready to start taking your benefits.

Transferring your BRASS funds to another arrangement

You can transfer your BRASS funds into another arrangement if you wish. However, you must have already stopped paying into BRASS before this can take place.

If you do transfer, then you do not have to take your BRASS funds at the same time as your main Fund benefits.

You will also have access to a wider variety of options for taking the money in your BRASS funds, including:

  • 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

This comes as a result of pension freedoms introduced by the Government in 2015.

You do not need to transfer your main Fund benefits alongside your BRASS benefits, although you would be able to do so if you are a preserved member. 

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. MoneyHelper 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

For more information on pension transfers, please click here

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 (IFA). You can find an IFA in your area at unbiased.co.uk.