Has something in your life changed?

Feb 17, 2021
If something in your life changes, your pension could be affected. And it’s important that you let us know as soon as possible.

By keeping your records up to date, you can help ensure we can keep in touch about any matters that affect you.

In particular, you should tell us about:

  • changes to your relationship status
  • the birth of any dependent children
  • changes to your work patterns, such as reduced hours or extended leave

You can update your details by  logging into your myRPS account (or registering for one). Alternatively, please call the Helpline on 0800 012 1117 or email  csu@railpen.com. Don't forget to quote your pension reference number - you can find this on recent letters from us or when you log into myRPS account.

Here’s a quick round up of some major life changes and how they can affect your pension:

Taking leave

If you’re off work for an extended period, you’ll need to consider whether your pension contributions will continue. Members of a defined benefit pension need to check this with their employer. For IWDC members it may depend on what you can afford.

If you get maternity, paternity, additional paternity, family or adoption leave pay, what you pay into your pension will be based on what you are earning at that time. However your employer will continue to pay their contributions based on your normal rate of pay.  You can find out more in our guide for family leave here

Going part-time

If you go part-time rather than working full-time, your pension contributions will go down. This is because your contributions are  based on the amount you earn/the hours you work. You can find out more in our guide to working part-time here  


If you need to retire earlier than expected due to ill-health, you may be able to take your pension early too. Certain criteria apply and medical evidence will be required. You can find out more in our guide to incapacity benefits for DB members here and for IWDC members here. A separate guide is available for members of the Network Rail Section here

Divorce or dissolution

If you face divorce or the dissolution of a civil partnership, your pension is likely to be considered along with your other assets when financial settlements are worked out. 

A court order can be made to transfer part of the value of your pension benefits to your ex-spouse, either during the divorce or dissolution proceedings or once you start claiming the pension yourself.

You can find out more in our guide to divorce here 


If you die before you claim your RPS benefits, a lump sum could be paid to your beneficiaries.

You can tell us who you’d like your beneficiaries to be by nominating them in your myRPS account.