Normal minimum pension age and protected pension age
Normal minimum pension age and protected pension age

The following Pensions guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Normal minimum pension age and protected pension age
  • Normal minimum pension age
  • What is a protected pension age?
  • Requirements for protected pension age
  • Protected pension scheme
  • Entitlement condition
  • Retirement condition
  • Employment restrictions
  • Block transfers
  • Transfers between 10 December 2003 and 5 April 2006
  • more

Normal minimum pension age

Normal minimum pension age is the earliest age at which members may take their benefits (other than ill-health benefits) as authorised member payments under a registered pension scheme. Normal minimum pension age is currently 55, having been increased from the age of 50 on 6 April 2010. Where members started to take their benefits after reaching the normal minimum pension age of 50 before 6 April 2010 but they were not yet aged 55 by that date, those benefits can still continue to be paid after 6 April 2010 as authorised payments.

Members can only take their benefits before normal minimum pension age as authorised member payments if they:

  1. meet the statutory ill health condition—for further information, see Ill-health early retirement—interpreting the scheme rules — Post A-day—Ill-health condition, or

  2. have a protected pension age

Otherwise, if schemes pay out benefits to members before normal minimum pension age, those payments will be unauthorised member payments and will incur punitive tax charges on the member and the scheme. For further information, see Practice Note: Unauthorised payments—tax charges and reporting requirements—Tax charges on making unauthorised payments.

HMRC has published guidance on taking benefits before normal minimum pension age in the Pensions Tax Manual at PTM062100 and PTM062200.

What is a protected pension age?

Some scheme members had a right