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Department of Health and Social Care launches consultation on proposed continuation of retire and return easements

The Department of Health and Social Care has announced a consultation on proposals to extend retire and return easements to 31 October 2022 via temporary amendments to NHS Pension Scheme regulations.


What is included in the consultation

The Department of Health and Social Care has proposed a continuation of the temporary easements which were introduced by section 45 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 beyond the current expiry on 24 March 2022.

This proposal would take effect from 25 March 2022 to ensure the continued suspension of NHS Pension Scheme regulations following the expiry of section 45 on 24 March 2022. The ‘retire and return’ easements would continue until 31 October 2022.

The amendments to the NHS Pension Scheme regulations would continue the temporary suspension of:

  • the 16-hour rule in the 1995 section
  • abatement of special class status members who retire and return to work between age 55 to 60 in the 1995 section
  • abatement of draw-down members who claim a portion of their benefits and continue working in the 2008 section and 2015 scheme.

These easements allow retired and partially retired staff to return to work in the NHS or increase their working commitments without having their pension benefits suspended or reduced.

You can find more information on the current easing of retire and return restrictions on our COVID-19 guidance on support for retired members page on the NHS Pensions Pensioner hub.


How to respond

You can view the consultation documents and respond online.

The consultation will close at 11:45pm on 1 March 2022.