Leaving your pension scheme, or ‘opting out’

While you are still working for the bank you can choose to ‘opt out’ of your pension scheme. You can opt out at any time, and there are some good reasons why you may want to, but you should speak with an independent financial adviser before you do. That’s because if you opt out, you’d be giving up valuable benefits and would not be able to re-join. You may need to give notice to the bank and the Trustee.

A step-by-step guide to opting out

Here’s an idea of the typical steps that need to be taken – you can also see what you’d need to provide, and when and how to provide them.

  • Actions for you
  • Actions for us, the administrator

See timeline

  1. Get a quote

    See the value of the benefits you’ve built to date.

  2. Get advice

    Get advice from an independent financial adviser. This may take a few weeks or months to arrange, so start this process as soon as you can.

  3. Opt out (if it’s right for you)

    Log in to the NatWest Group Benefits Hub to opt out. You will then have a one-month notice period. If you change your mind during the notice period, please contact us.

  4. The bank will tell us your opting out date

    This is the date when you’ll stop building up future benefits in your pension scheme. This means you will become a deferred member.

  5. We’ll update your pension record as soon as possible

    You’ll receive a letter in the post with your new log in details.

  6. Check your pension record

    You’ll be able to see that your record has been updated one month after your notice period ends.

How long will it take?

You’ll need to give at least a month’s notice when you opt out, so it normally won’t happen until the month after next. For example, if you opt out on 15 April, your last day of active membership will be 31 May. The whole process can take up to 2 months.

Leaving the bank

If you stop working for the bank, you’ll automatically leave your pension scheme and stop building up further benefits. You can keep your benefits in your pension scheme until you’re ready to take them, or you may be able to transfer some or all of your benefits to another pension arrangement.

What changes if you keep benefits in your pension scheme?

  1. You’ll become a deferred member

    While you are working at the bank and a member of your pension scheme, you are an active member; building up future benefits each year. When you leave the bank, or if you remain at the bank and opt out, you stop building up benefits and defer your pension until you decide to take it.

  2. You’ll need a password to log in to your pension record

    Once you’ve left the bank, you’ll need a User ID and password to log in to your pension record. Get in touch so that we can send you these details.

  3. Your income would be affected

    The amount of retirement income you’ll get will be calculated according to the rules of your pension scheme, using your pensionable service and final pensionable salary at the date you left. Shortly after you’ve left your pension scheme, we’ll send you a statement which confirms the value of your benefits at the date of leaving. You can also log in and request this statement (not available for all members).

  4. Death benefits may change

    Where applicable, pensions paid to loved ones would be based on your deferred retirement income and any lump sum payment may be calculated differently compared to if you were an active member.

Stay in touch

Before you leave the bank, make sure we have your up-to-date personal email, phone and address details, so you don’t miss out on important information about your benefits. You can update these online once you log in.