Death benefits

It’s not a topic most people want to think about, but it’s important to think about what happens when you’re gone.

If you are already receiving your pension when you die, your payments will continue until the end of the 4-week period of your death. We would need to reclaim any pension payments made after this time. We therefore need to be told about your death as soon as possible so that we can stop your pension payments and check if we need to pay any dependants’ pensions.

The following benefits may  be payable to your dependants when you die: 

Lump sum – the amount paid out depends on how much lump sum you took when you started claiming your benefits. If you have received your pension for more than five years, it’s unlikely that any lump sum would be paid. 

Don’t forget to keep your Nomination form up to date to: 

  • help speed up the process of paying the lump sum, and
  • avoid paying inheritance tax


The Trustee has ultimate responsibility for deciding who receives a lump-sum death benefit.

Spouse’s pension – this is usually worth half your basic benefits. Check what your benefits are worth by contacting the Scheme's administrator Railpen at or telephone the Helpline on 0800 012 1117. Please quote your Pension Reference Number. This is available when you log into your myRPS account.

Dependants’ pension – this may be paid to adults who depend on you financially (up to a maximum of three people) or the partner you were living with at the date of your death. 

Children’s pension the two youngest eligible children normally receive pensions until they are 18. If an eligible child is disabled or continues in full-time education after they are 18, the pension may still be paid, subject to Committee agreement.