USS is now under attack

  • The employers want to end guaranteed pension benefits.
  • They say your final pension should depend on how your 'investments' perform and not on your contributions.
  • We say it's wrong to risk our members' futures.

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Re-employment of pensioners

3 November 2005

TPS and USS information on the re-employment of pensioners.


A pensioner member of TPS (other than a member in receipt of an ill-health pension), who returns to lecturing is automatically a member of TPS while continuing to draw their pension under the scheme. By rejoining the scheme further pensionable service will accrue, and having completed a one-year qualifying period, further retirement benefits will be payable. The qualifying period can be discontinuous. However, unless you retired with an actuarially reduced pension, there are restrictions on the amount you can earn. The sum of your pension and your part-time earnings from teaching must not come to more than your 'salary of reference' in any financial year: this is the final salary on which your pension was based, increased annually in line with inflation.

If you retire with an ill-health pension you should consider the matter carefully and take appropriate professional advice before starting to teach again. If your pension was awarded on or after 1 April 1997, any teaching in a school or college will automatically lead to the loss of your ill-health pension. Work of any kind could lead to a review of your incapacity from teaching.


An institution can define whether a post will be pensionable in USS but it would not be a valid exercise for re-employment to be in what is substantially the same post. Therefore any future employment must be in a new post and the work different to that done before retirement: there is no limit within the scheme rules as to the length of any new contract and is a matter between the employer and employee.

From 1 October 2016 USS re-employed pensioners will no longer pay the higher contributions, but 8% pension contributions the same as all active members.

Further information

Last updated: 4 April 2019