Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan
You may have benefits in the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan if you were a permanent employee who commenced service before 1 October 2002. Before 31 March 1997, your benefits built up under the Siemens Benefits Scheme. After 31 March 1997, depending on the choices you made at that time, your benefits built up in either the Booster Plan or the Saver Plan. From 1 October 2005, Booster Plan and Saver Plan active members were given the option to become Foundation Plan members with effect from that date.
The Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan closed on 31 December 2007 as a result of the Company’s pension changes and no new members can join.
Members at that date stopped being active members building up pensionable service and are now known as continuing members. Some special terms apply to continuing members.
If you left the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan before 31 December 2007, you are known as a deferred member. If you left after this date, you are known as a former continuing member.
If you are a continuing member or former continuing member and joined the Investor Plan then your benefits under the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan are additional to those provided by the Investor Plan.
All benefits provided by the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan are subject to the Siemens Benefits Scheme’s maximum limits and any impact of the Lifetime Allowance. Any increase in the value of your benefits is measured against the Annual Allowance. You will be told how much of your Annual Allowance you have used on your annual benefit statement.
When you come to draw your benefits, you will have the option of giving up part of your own pension to provide an additional pension for your spouse payable on your death. For more details please contact AskHR.
How are your benefits calculated?
As a member of the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan, you built up benefits based on your pensionable service up to 31 December 2007 or your pre 1 January 2008 leaving date if earlier, subject to maximum limits. Your benefits built up as follows:
Siemens Benefits Scheme
For each year of pensionable service while a member of the Siemens Benefits Scheme prior to 1 April 1997, your benefits built up at the greater of:
- 1/60th of your pre-April 1997 final pensionable salary or
- 1/90th of your final scheme salary
Your benefits built up at 1/80th of your final pensionable salary for each year of pensionable service while a Foundation Plan member up to 31 December 2007, or your pre 1 January 2008 leaving date if earlier.
Your pension built up at 1/60th of your final pensionable salary for each year of pensionable service while a Saver Plan member up to 31 December 2007, or your pre 1 January 2008 leaving date if earlier.
Your pension built up at 1/45th of your final pensionable salary for each year of pensionable service while a Booster Plan member up to 31 December 2007, or your pre 1 January 2008 leaving date if earlier.
Plessey Pension Fund
If your benefits under the Plessey Pension Fund were transferred to the Siemens Benefits Scheme with effect from 1 April 1991, your pension will be subject to additional guarantees. Please contact AskHR for more information.
How are your benefits revalued?
Your benefits at 31 December 2007 or your pre 1 January 2008 leaving date if earlier are revalued every year until you retire or die. The way your benefits are revalued depends on whether you are a:
- Continuing member, or
- Former continuing member. or
- Deferred member
Enhanced revaluation of benefits for continuing and former continuing members
Your benefits are revalued every year until you retire or die. Normally, benefits are revalued in line with Statutory Revaluation terms but your benefits are also revalued on enhanced terms, which can give a better result. When you take your benefits the higher of the two outcomes will be paid.
Enhanced revaluation is composed of:
- Salary-related revaluation, and
- Statutory-type revaluations
Enhanced revaluation of benefits for continuing and former continuing members - salary-related revaluation
This preserves some link to salaries until 2023 or until you stop being a continuing member. As your salary increases, so will your benefits. The salary-related elements are:
- An annual revaluation that started on 1 January 2009. The value of your benefits at the previous 1 January is revalued by the percentage increase in your final pensionable salary over the year, subject to the salary cap.
The last annual revaluation will be on the earliest of 1 January 2023, 1 January of the year you take your benefits or 1 January of the year you leave Siemens.
- A part-year revaluation applies if you leave or take your benefits before 1 January 2023. The value of your benefits at the previous 1 January is revalued by the percentage increase in your final pensionable salary over the part-year, subject to the salary cap.
Enhanced revaluation of benefits for continuing and former continuing members - statutory-type revaluations
These are not required by law but they provide the same result as Statutory Revaluation would have done if it had applied over the relevant periods. Statutory-type revaluation is used to provide either:
- A minimum level of benefit (underpin), against which the salary-related elements are compared, and applies from:
» 1 January 2008 to your leaving date if it is before 1 January 2023
» 1 January 2008 to 1 January 2023 if you remain a continuing member at that date.
- An additional revaluation applied for periods when the salary-related elements no longer apply, that is from:
» your leaving date to payment date
» 1 January 2023 to your leaving date (if earlier than age 65)
» 1 January 2023 to your payment date if you have not previously left Siemens
Not all of these elements may apply to you as they depend on a variety of factors. For example, if you remain employed with Siemens until you draw your benefits, references to the date you leave won’t apply to you. Similarly, if you take your benefits before 1 January 2023, references to revaluation after that date won’t apply to you either.
Remember, these enhanced revaluations only apply if they give a better result than would be achieved by Statutory Revaluation.
Revaluation of benefits for deferred members
Between your date of leaving and retirement or death, your deferred benefits are indexed by Statutory Revaluation. This helps to preserve the value of your benefits.
Lump sum on retirement
You can give up some of your pension and take it as a tax-free cash sum, broadly up to 25% of the value of your all of your Siemens pension benefits, up to your available Lifetime Allowance.
For continuing members and former continuing members some or all of any tax-free cash sum can come from your Investor Plan benefits. This means that the amount of your Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan pension you have to give up to secure a lump sum can be reduced - possibly to nil. You should consider taking independent financial advice first before making any decision that may reduce your Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan pension.
You have the following options at retirement:
Early Retirement – You can retire from age 55 (increasing to 57 in 2028). If you retire before age 65, your pension may be reduced. Your early retirement pension will be based on your benefits at 31 December 2007 or date of leaving the Plan if earlier (calculated as explained above), revalued each year until retirement and then reduced by an early retirement factor.
Normal Retirement - Your normal retirement date is the end of the month in which you reach age 65.
Late Retirement – Your benefits will be increased to allow for this late payment.
Ill Health Retirement - If, after taking medical advice, the Trustees agree that you are, and will continue to be, sufficiently incapacitated, you can draw your benefits early at any age. Your pension may be reduced to reflect early payment.
When you die, the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan offers a range of benefits for your family and dependants.
The Trustees have the discretion to decide how your cash sum death benefit is divided between your relatives, dependants, legal personal representatives or nominated beneficiaries. This way, payment can be made more quickly and the benefits are unlikely to attract inheritance tax.
You can complete an Expression of Wish form and the Trustees will pay close attention to it. You would be wise to keep it up to date if your circumstances change – if you get married, register a civil partnership, separate or divorce, or have children. Even if you are unattached or don’t have children, you may have family members or close friends who you would want the Trustees to consider.
If you die before you draw your pension
If you are actively contributing to the Investor Plan a cash sum will be paid to your relatives, dependants, legal personal representatives or nominated beneficiaries. It will be the higher of:
- 3 x your death benefit salary plus the value of your investor plan fund (excluding any AVCs, EDCs or transfers-in) on the date you die; or
- 6 x your death benefit salary.
In either case, the value of your AVCs, EDCs or transfers-in are added to the cash sum.
The cash sum will be tax free as long as the value of all cash sums from all of your pension schemes is less than the Lifetime Allowance. There will also be a cash sum equal to a refund of your contributions paid into your Foundation, Saver or Booster Plan before 31 December 2007. The Trustees have the discretion to decide how the cash sum is divided between your relatives, dependants, legal personal representatives or nominated beneficiaries.
If you are no longer contributing to the Investor Plan a cash sum of your Investor Plan fund value , a refund of your contributions paid into your Foundation, Saver or Booster Plan before 31 December 2007, plus the value of any of your Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs) and Employee Directed Contributions (EDCs) will be paid. The Trustees have the discretion to decide how the cash sum is divided between your relatives, dependants, legal personal representatives or nominated beneficiaries.
A spouse’s pension will be paid equal to 60% of the pension you would have received had you retired on the date of your death.
If you are more than 10 years older than your spouse or partner, the Trustees have discretion to reduce their pension.
Eligible children’s pension
A pension based on the spouse’s pension will be paid for your eligible children as follows:
Pension for a Dependant
In certain circumstances, a pension may be payable under the Scheme’s Trust Deed and Rules to one or more of your Dependants. In broad terms, for these purposes a Dependant is:
- any person who is financially dependent on you or with whom you have a relationship of mutual dependence;
- or any children who have not reached the age of 18 or who are in full time education or training up to the age of 24 or who are dependent on you because of disability.
If you die after drawing your pension.
Cash sum - 5 year guarantee
If you die within 5 years of retirement, a cash sum equal to the balance of 5 years’ instalments of your pension plus any unused AVC and EDC account balances will be paid. For information on the cash sum paid if you retire later and die after age 75, please contact AskHR.
A spouse’s pension will be paid equal to 60% of the pension you were receiving when you died (this will not include any of your pension bought through AVCs if that pension was described as ‘single life’ or equivalent).
If you are more than 10 years older than your spouse or partner, the Trustees have discretion to reduce their pension. Eligible children’s pension A pension based on the spouse’s pension will be paid for your eligible children as follows:
If you are not married or living with a spouse when you die, the Trustees have discretion to pay the spouse’s pension to any other dependant. If not, it may be added to the pensions paid to your eligible children.
Once in payment, your Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan pension is subject to annual reviews in line with the Retail Prices Index (RPI).
Your Plan pension is guaranteed to increase each year on 1 April by the rise in RPI during the 12 months to the previous December, up to a maximum of:
- 5% for pension earned up to 6 April 2006, and
- 3% for pension earned after that date.
If RPI does not increase, your pension will remain at the same level (it will not decrease).
...you worked part time?
You still receive the full range of Plan benefits. However, to ensure that your benefits reflect your part-time hours of work, your part-time pensionable salary and pensionable service were re-expressed in terms of their full-time equivalents when calculating your benefits.
...you get divorced?
Pension rights are normally taken into account as part of a couple’s assets. There are a number of options available to the Court in dealing with pension rights and we will comply with any instructions from a court. If you need more pension information, please contact AskHR.
If you are getting divorced or dissolving your civil partnership you should update your expression of wish form.
Any continuous period in years and complete months during which you were a contributing member of the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plans up to 31 December 2007.
You are a continuing member if you were an active member of the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan on 31 December 2007 when it closed as a result of the Company’s pension changes. From 1 January 2008, you were no longer able to build up further pensionable service under the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan. However, benefits built up until that date are protected and benefit from annual increases (known as enhanced revaluation) from 31 December 2007 until 1 January 2023.
You will remain a continuing member until you leave the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan, take your benefits or die.
Former continuing member
A continuing member who left Siemens after 31 December 2007 or who voluntarily opted-out of continuing member status (to manage your Lifetime Allowance position for example).
For the 2019/20 tax year, the earnings cap is £166,200 a year. It increases broadly in line with increases in the Retail Prices Index (RPI). Maximum Siemens Benefits Scheme limits apply only to your Plan benefits. You may have additional Investor Plan benefits that exceed these limits.
A limit on the total value of pension benefits that you can build up tax-efficiently during your lifetime, including your Plan benefits and benefits from other pension arrangements, except those from the State.
When you take any benefits from the Plan, their value will be checked against your available Lifetime Allowance. The Lifetime Allowance is £1,055,000 for 2019/2020.
Benefits built up above the Lifetime Allowance can only be taken as cash and will be taxed, currently at an overall rate of 55%.
The Annual Allowance is the amount your pension contributions and benefits can increase in value each year without incurring a tax charge. The amount that will count towards the Annual Allowance will be calculated as 16 times the increase above a specified amount. Contributions, if any, that you and the Company have made to your Investor Plan investment account also count towards the Annual Alowance.
The Annual Allowance is £40,000.
AVCs and EDCs are also limited by the Annual Allowance. Any AVCs or EDCs paid above the Annual Allowance will incur a tax charge.
A reduced Annual Allowance applies in some circumstances such as for high earners or for anyone that has taken advantage of flexible Money Purchase benefits. For more information contact AskHR.
The person to whom you are legally married at the date of your death. In line with the Civil Partnership Act 2004, same-sex partners who have been through a civil ceremony will be treated as spouses with regard to payment of any contracted-out benefits built up after 6 April 1988. In addition, they will be treated as spouses in all respects with regard to benefits built up after 5 December 2005.
If you are not married or are not in a registered civil partnership, or are not living with a spouse, this definition also includes any person who, in the opinion of the Trustees, was dependent on you financially or because of disability or had a financial relationship of mutual dependence with you.
Pre 1 January 2008 leaving date
The date, which falls before 1 January 2008, on which you ceased to be an active member of the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan.
Pre-April 1997 final pensionable salary
The highest annual figure produced by averaging the salary of a member (as notified to the Trustees) less an amount equal to the annual rate of the basic state pension for a single person over any 36 consecutive months ending in the ten years before leaving active membership.
Final scheme salary
The highest annual figure produced by averaging salary figures as notified to the Trustees over any 36 consecutive months ending in the 10 years before leaving active membership.
This is a form of limited indexation of benefits prescribed by law. It requires that deferred benefits are indexed from your date of leaving to the date they come into payment or to the date you transfer your benefits to a new employer’s scheme or personal pension scheme, or to your normal retirement date.
This indexation is currently based on the rise in the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) subject to a maximum of 5% a year for benefits built up before April 2009 and 2.5% a year for benefits built up after that date.
An increase of 2% above the annual percentage increase in RPI for September in the preceding calendar year. For part years, the salary cap is calculated using the increase in the RPI from September of the preceding calendar year to the month falling 4 months before the month of the earlier of the leaving date or payment date. In addition, the 2% element of the salary cap is pro-rated by applying the formula (2/12)% x number of completed calendar months since the preceding 1 January.
Any child of the member (including a step-child or legally adopted child) who is under the age of 18 or, if in full-time education or vocational training, is under the age of 23, or was dependent on the member at the time of his/her death on account of physical or mental incapacity.
Any continuous period in years and complete months during which you were a contributing member of the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan up to 31 December 2007.
For the purposes of calculating the benefits due from the Foundation, Saver and Booster Plan (but not benefits in the Investor Plan), pensionable salary is higher of the following:
- your salary less an amount equal to the basic flat rate State pension for a single person; or
- 80% of your salary.
Salary means your total basic contractual annual salary or wages, together with any total bonus and commission payments received in the previous 12 months. Pensionable salary may be subject to the maximum Siemens Benefits Scheme limits.
Log in to your DB account
Log in to get your pension information. If you have not already registered for your online account, please contact AskHR who will be able to provide you with your registration details.
By registering and logging in you can view/update the following...
✓ Your current pension amount and tax code
✓ A history of previous payments
✓ Your personal details, including postal and e-mail address
✓ Your bank details
and much more...