Membership and contributions


For information about how your benefits are worked out when you retire see How a CARE Scheme works.

What happens if I’m absent?

There may be times when you are absent from work and you don’t pay your Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) contributions. The absence could be for a number of reasons such as:

  • You have a period of authorised unpaid leave;
  • You have a period of unpaid additional child-related leave; or
  • You take industrial action (strike).

If you don’t pay contributions for a period of absence as noted above you will lose accrued pension for this period. However, it’s possible to buy this ‘lost’ pension by paying for additional pension contributions (APCs).

Infographic depicting the recovery of missed contribution opportunities by paying APCs

For more information, please contact your employer or visit the LGPS APC modeller.


Click on the below to find out how much you need to contribute and see how you can increase your pension.

How much do I pay?

How much you pay in your pension account depends on how much you are paid and the pay band you fall into.

If you work part-time or term-time, your rate is based on the actual rate of pay for your job(s), so you only pay contributions on the pay you actually earn per job.

The pay bands that apply from 1 April 2022 are below:

If your actual pensionable pay rate is You contribute 50/50 section
Up to £16,500 5.50% 2.75%
£16,501 to £25,900 5.80% 2.90%
£25,901 to £42,100 6.50% 3.25%
£42,101 to £53,300 6.80% 3.40%
£53,301 to £74,700 8.50% 4.25%
£74,701 to £105,900 9.90% 4.95%
£105,901 to £124,800 10.50% 5.25%
£124,801 to £187,200 11.40% 5.70%
£187,201 or more 12.50% 6.25%

The contribution rates and pay bands in this table will be reviewed periodically and may change in the future.

Visit the 50/50 section to see more information.

Meet Jenny...


Jenny £22,850 per year 5.8% to pay £110.44 per month
(before tax relief)


Jenny £11,424 per year 5.5% to pay £52.36 per month
(before tax relief)

How can I increase my pension?

You can pay more to top up your pension.

To increase your pension, you can buy additional pension by taking out an additional pension contribution (APC) contract in order to buy extra LGPS pension. You can buy extra pension by paying APCs regularly, over a period of time, or you can buy extra pension by paying in a one-off lump sum.

The amount it costs to buy extra pension depends on how much pension you want to buy, the age you are when you start paying the extra contributions and the length of time you want to pay them for. There is a maximum amount of additional pension that you can buy that is indexed each year in line with the cost of living. Use the LGPS APC modeller to produce quotes for the cost of any purchase and find what’s right for you.

A graphic depicting how AVCs translate into more pension

You can also pay additional voluntary contributions (AVCs), which is an in-house option offered through Aegon. However, there are limits on the amount of extra contributions you can pay.

It’s worth checking how paying in more may affect your Annual Allowance limit, and you can check this using the HM Revenue and Customers calculator.

Visit the Contact details page if you have any questions.