Pension Changes - April 2022

In 2015 the government made changes to most public service pension schemes, including the NHS Pension Scheme. These reforms didn’t apply to members closest to retirement, who stayed in their legacy schemes (1995/2008 Schemes) with ‘transitional protection’.

This means that members with full protection didn’t have to move to the reformed 2015 Scheme at all, and members with tapered protection could stay in their existing scheme for longer than members without transitional protection.

The Court of Appeal later found that this discriminated against younger members. The government is removing this age discrimination from public service pension schemes where transitional protection was introduced. This is known as the ‘McCloud remedy’.

From 1 April 2022 all members will be in the 2015 Scheme; as part of the McCloud remedy to remove age discrimination from the NHS Pension Scheme. All members of the NHS Pension Scheme will be moved to the 2015 scheme, including those who previously received full ‘transitional protection’.

Pension already built up in the 1995/2008 Schemes will not be lost.

You do not need to decide anything now. If you were affected by the changes in 2015, when it’s time to pay you your pension benefits, you’ll be asked if you want to receive 1995/2008 Scheme or 2015 Scheme benefits for the period between 1 April 2015 and 31 March 2022. This is when the discrimination could apply, and it’s called the remedy period.

For those moving to the 2015 Scheme on 1st April 2022 we’ve clarified some of the key questions below

1. Pension already built up in the 1995/2008 Schemes will not be lost. 2.All members will be in the 2015 Scheme from 1 April 2022 3.You do not need to make a decision now about my pension for the remedy period."

Myth: "I need to retire before 1 April 2022 otherwise I'll lose my 1995/2008 pension"




Myth: "I've got protection, so I won't have to move to the 2015 Scheme"




Myth: "I'm being moved to the 2015 Scheme, so I need to make a decision now about my pension for the remedy period"



  • Staff will not lose any pension they have already earned in the 1995/2008 Schemes. this can still be claimed after 1 April 2022 in line with the existing rules for these schemes.
  • Pension benefits from the 1995/2008 schemes will continue to be linked to the member's final salary.
  • From April 1 2022, staff will build up pension in the 2015 Scheme. This means that their full pension pot at retirement is likely to be made up of a combination of 1995/2008/2015 Scheme benefits.


  • The 1995/2008 Schemes will both close on 31 March 2022
  • All active scheme members will therefore be in the 2015 Scheme from 1 April 2022, including those that previously had full or tapered protection
  • Members will be automatically moved to the 2015 Scheme on 1 April 2022 and do not have to do anything to ensure continuous pensions scheme membership.


  • Those affected by the McCloud remedy will be asked to make a choice about some pension benefits.
  • Staff do not need to do anything until they come to retire.
  • Those retiring after 1 October 2023 will be asked to make the choice as part of their retirement process.
  • Staff planning to retire before 1 October 2023 should make decisions based on current rules. Once the required legislation is in place, these individuals will be contacted by NHS Pensions and offered their choice of pension benefits retrospectively. Any resulting changes to changes to pension payments will be backdated to the date retirement.

Myth: "If I don't retire before 1 April 2022, I'll have to wait until state pension age to claim my pension."

Myth: "The 2015 Scheme is worse than the 1995/2008 Schemes."  


  • From 1 April 2022, pension benefits from the 1995/2008 Schemes can be accessed at the same time as they can now.
  • Staff with Special Class and Mental Heath Officer status will still be able to take their 1995 Scheme pensions without reduction from age 55, providing they continue to meet the eligibility criteria.


  • The 2015 Scheme and the 1995/2008 Schemes are all very generous.
  • Depending on individual circumstances, many members will benefit from moving to the 2015 Scheme
  • Members will not lose any pension already built up in the 1995/2008 Schemes.

To find out more visit NHS Pensions – Changes to public service pensions