employer login member login

Welplan Pensions - Employee FAQs

Closure of Welplan Pensions and Selection of New Pension Provider

Frequently Asked Questions about the scheme closure letter dated 13 August 2020

Welplan Pensions – Contributing (Active) Members:

Who is Welplan pensions?

  • Welplan Pensions is the pension scheme that your employer has used for the pension contributions that you and your employer have paid.

What is happening at Welplan Pensions?

  • Welplan Pensions closed after contributions from your last pay day in May were paid into the Scheme.
  • Your employer has chosen a new scheme for contributions from June onwards. This is either the Trustee chosen scheme or a different
  • All the money from the contributions that have been paid into Welplan Pensions by you and your employer (your pension pot) will also be moved to a new scheme. This will be the one chosen by your employer unless you choose where your pension pot is moved to. This transfer will happen around October - November.
  • We wrote to you on 8 June to explain your choices, including the option to choose where your pension pot is moved to.

What do I need to do now?

  • If you want your pension pot to be moved to your employers nominated scheme (our letter of 8 June 2020 tells you which scheme this is), then you do not need to do
  • If would prefer to move your pension pot to a scheme of your choice, then you need to contact The deadline for completed transfer requests is the 8 September. You can request a Transfer Value Pack to start the process via email to Pensions@welplan.co.uk , however, please note processing any requests will take up to two weeks and this may leave you, and the receiving scheme,  with insufficient time to complete the documentation.

I’ve requested a transfer and it’s not been processed yet. What should I do?

  • If you have already requested a Transfer Value Pack, we suggest you contact your receiving scheme to ensure they have completed the relevant documentation, before contacting Welplan Pensions. Neither the Trustee nor the administrator of Welplan Pension will actively contact you or your chosen receiving scheme for any outstanding information needed to complete the transfer process. If you or your chosen scheme fails to provide some or all the information we have asked for, or the completed documents are received after 8 September 2020, the transfer to your chosen receiving scheme will not take place. Your benefits will instead be transferred to Smart Pension, which is the Trustee Default Scheme referred to in the Trustee’s letter of 8 June 2020. If you miss the transfer cut-off date and your benefits are transferred to Smart Pension, you retain the right to transfer out at any time (subject to overriding law and the Smart Pension scheme rules).

How can I protect myself from pension scams when deciding where to transfer my Welplan pension to?

  • The Covid-19 pandemic may make all of us more vulnerable to scams and in these difficult times, decision-making might be affected in a way that could damage your retirement planning.
  • To learn more about how to protect yourself from pension scams, visit https://www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart.
  • We encourage you to seek guidance and advice before making important decisions about your finances.

Is there anything else I should consider when deciding whether to transfer my pension pot to a scheme of my choosing?

  • There are many things to think about if you choose your own scheme to move your pension pot to. We encourage you to seek guidance and advice before making important decisions about your finances. Our letter of 8 June provided a number of links to further
  • One particular thing to consider is whether you will lose any entitlement to a larger tax-free lump sum at retirement requesting to transfer to your own scheme, instead of the scheme detailed in our letter of 8
  • If you were a member of Welplan Pensions before 6 April 2006 then you may be able to take an enhanced tax free lump sum at retirement in relation to contributions paid before then of more than the normal quarter of your
  • If you transfer your pension pot to another scheme at the same time as other members, you are able to retain this entitlement. This is the case if you take no action and transfer to the scheme detailed in our letter of 8
  • If you transfer to a scheme of your choice, then you may lose any enhanced tax free lump sum entitlement unless you are certain that other Welplan members are being transferred to the same scheme at the same time (though you will still be able to take a quarter of your fund as a tax free lump sum)
  • If you are considering a transfer to a scheme of your choice and were a member of Welplan Pensions before 6 April 2006, then you should check with us whether you are entitled to these enhanced benefits and take relevant advice, before making your decision.
  • All benefit entitlements are subject to changes in the law.

I want my future contributions to be paid to a different scheme – can I do this?

  • The law states that it is your employer who chooses which scheme to use for future contributions paid by your employer and you.
  • So, if you choose to transfer your Welplan pension pot to another scheme, then it will be held separately from your regular workplace pension
  • You should consider the pros and cons of having your pension savings in more than one place. Different pension providers offer different investment and benefit options, and charges may vary.

Will the transfer of my pension pot cost me any money?

  • The charges incurred by Welplan Pensions members will not increase and you will incur no charges for the transfer of your pension pot to your employer’s chosen
  • If you choose to use another scheme there may be charges incurred by you. You should check with your chosen scheme.

Can I get my money back now?

  • Once contributions have been paid into a pension scheme, your money must remain in a pension scheme for your future benefit until you are at least 55 years old, except in certain circumstances.

When will my pension pot in Welplan Pensions be transferred to the new scheme?

  • We expect the transfer of your Welplan pension pot to take place between October and November.
  • We will write to you nearer the time to confirm this.

Where can I go if I need help about my pension?

  • If you want more guidance, then we have provided links to further help in the letters we sent to you on 8 June and 12 March.

Are my welfare benefits secure?

  • In addition to the pension scheme, Welplan also operates a number of industry-wide welfare benefit schemes which provide for sickness, disability and death
  • These schemes are unaffected by the changes to the pension
  • So, if you participate in one or more of these schemes your entitlement to benefits will continue exactly as it does now.

Welplan Pensions – Non-Contributing (Deferred) Members:

Who is a non-contributing member?
If you have accumulated funds (also called a pension pot) in Welplan Pensions as a result of contributions from a previous job or simply do not continue to pay ongoing contributions to Welplan pensions, then you are a non-contributing member.  This is sometimes called a  being a deferred member.

Who is Welplan pensions?

  • Welplan Pensions is the name of the pension scheme you joined during your time at a previous job or your current employer if you have chosen not to pay ongoing contributions. Since your employment with that employer has stopped or you opted out, you still have a pension pot in Welplan Pension from money you and your employer paid in.

What is happening at Welplan Pensions?

  • All the money from the contributions that have been paid into Welplan Pensions by you and your (former) employer will be moved to the Trustee Default Scheme, Smart Pension Master Trust. This transfer will happen around October - November.
  • We wrote to you on 8 June to explain your choices, including the option to choose where your pension pot is moved to.

What do I need to do now?

  • If you want your pension pot to be moved to Smart Pension, then you do not need to do
  • If would prefer to move your pension pot to a scheme of your choice, then you need to contact . The deadline for completed transfer requests is the 8 September. You can request a Transfer Value Pack to start the process via email to Pensions@welplan.co.uk , however, please note processing any requests will take up to two weeks and this may leave you, and the receiving scheme, with insufficient time to complete the documentation.

I’ve requested a transfer and it’s not been processed yet. What should I do?

  • If you have already requested a Transfer Value Pack, we suggest you contact your receiving scheme to ensure they have completed the relevant documentation, before contacting Welplan Pensions. Neither the Trustee nor the administrator of Welplan Pension will actively contact you or your chosen receiving scheme for any outstanding information needed to complete the transfer process. If you or your chosen scheme fails to provide some or all the information we have asked for, or the completed documents are received after 8 September 2020, the transfer to your chosen receiving scheme will not take place. Your benefits will instead be transferred to Smart Pension, which is the Trustee Default Scheme referred to in the Trustee’s letter of 8 June 2020. If you miss the transfer cut-off date and your benefits are transferred to Smart Pension, you retain the right to transfer out at any time (subject to overriding law and the Smart Pension scheme rules).

How can I protect myself from pension scams when deciding where to transfer my Welplan pension to?

  • The Covid-19 pandemic may make all of us more vulnerable to scams and in these difficult times, decision-making might be affected in a way that could damage your retirement planning.
  • To learn more about how to protect yourself from pension scams, visit https://www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart.
  • We encourage you to seek guidance and advice before making important decisions about your finances.

Is there anything else I should consider when deciding whether to transfer my pension pot to a scheme of my choosing?

  • There are many things to think about if you choose your own scheme to move your pension pot to. We encourage you to seek guidance and advice before making important decisions about your finances. Our letter of 8 June provided a number of links to further
  • One particular thing to consider is whether you will lose any entitlement to a larger tax-free lump sum at retirement requesting to transfer to your own scheme, instead of to Smart
  • If you were a member of Welplan Pensions before 6 April 2006 then you may be able to take an enhanced tax-free lump sum at retirement in relation to contributions paid before then of more than the normal quarter of your
  • If you transfer your pension pot to another scheme at the same time as other members, you are able to retain this entitlement. This is the case if you take no action and transfer to Smart
  • If you transfer to a scheme of your choice, then you may lose any enhanced tax free lump sum entitlement unless you are certain that other Welplan members are being transferred to the same scheme at the same time, which may be unlikely (though you will still be able to take a quarter of your fund as a tax free lump sum).
  • If you are considering a transfer to a scheme of your choice and were a member of Welplan Pensions before 6 April 2006, then you should check with us whether you are entitled to these enhanced benefits and take relevant advice, before making your decision.
  • All benefit entitlements are subject to changes in the law.

Will the transfer of my pension pot cost me any money?

  • The charges incurred by Welplan Pensions members will not increase and you will incur no charges for the transfer of your pension pot to Smart Pension.
  • If you choose to use another scheme there may be charges incurred by you. You should check with your chosen scheme.

Can I get my money back now?

  • Once contributions have been paid into a pension scheme, your money must remain in a pension scheme for your future benefit until you are at least 55 years old, except in certain circumstances.

When will my pension pot in Welplan Pensions be transferred to the new scheme?

  • We expect the transfer of your Welplan pension pot to take place between October and November.
  • We will write to you nearer the time to confirm this.

Where can I go if I need help about my pension?

  • If you want more guidance, then we have provided links to further help in the letters we sent to you on 8 June and 12 March.

Please note that nothing in these FAQs should be construed as legal or financial advice. You are strongly encouraged to take advice relating to your own circumstances.