Please note, for recent changes and updates, please visit changes to the USS pension scheme.


USS is a national scheme open to all staff on academic or related levels which covers all the pre-1992 Universities and a number of other educational and research bodies. The following grades are eligible for USS under the Terms & Conditions operated by the College.


The USS Scheme

In April 2016 the USS Final Salary section closed and was replaced with USS Retirement Income Builder scheme for all members. This is a Career Revalued Benefits scheme.  At the same time USS also introduced new contributions rates of 8% for employees and 18% for the employer.  The accrual rate for the new Career Revalued Benefits scheme increased from 1/80th to 1/75th of pensionable earnings as pension each year.

In October 2016 a Defined Contribution (DC) scheme will be introduced, USS Investment Builder. All USS members were sent information in July covering a range of investment options via an online facility.  All members will have the option to make Additional Voluntary Contributions to the DC section of the scheme at 1% or more and for those who take up this option the College will make an additional ‘matched’ 1% only.

All members will earn pension in the Career Revalued Benefits scheme up to a salary threshold, currently £57,216.50.  Contributions deducted from salary in excess of the threshold will be added to the members Investment Builder account.


Main Benefits

  • CRB – A pension 1/75th of pensionable salary for each year of pensionable service.
  • DC section – Additional 1% contribution from employer
  • CRB – A cash lump sum of three times the pension

Please note the tax-free cash at retirement is in addition to pension.


Other Benefits in Both Sections

  • Immediate life cover – a lump sum of three times your salary together with a pension for your dependants should you die before retirement whilst in employment.
  • An inflation-proofed pension – regular income, plus a tax-free lump sum, when you retire.
  • Long-term illness cover (after two years' membership in aggregate) – an inflation-proofed pension for life, and a tax-free lump sum if you can't go on working because of long-term illness.
  • Job move simplicity – moving from one USS member institution to another is straight forward.
  • Quality benefits – a scheme that's equal to the best public sector pension arrangements and recognised as providing generous terms which overall are unlikely to be matched elsewhere.
  • Flexibility – you can, depending on circumstances, start receiving your pension before the scheme's normal retirement of 65.


Please note that nothing stated in this summary can override the Rules of the Scheme.

If you have any queries, please contact the College Pensions’ team at


Further Sources of Information

The registered office of the Trustee Company, to which enquiries about the scheme or about an individual's entitlements should be sent, is:

Universities Superannuation Scheme Limited
Royal Liver Building
L3 1PY

Please visit their website for more information.