Pensioners

As you are aware Guinness and GrandMet merged in December 1997 to form Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks company. However, it wasn't until 1 April 1999 that the Diageo Pension Scheme was created as a result of the successful merger of the GUD Pension Trust and the GrandMet Group Pension Fund.

We recognise the importance of providing easy access to clear pensions information and we hope you find this website useful.

Pensions are paid monthly in advance on the 6th day of each month. Payments are made by direct transfer to your chosen bank, building society or GIRO account. If the 6th is a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday, we will ensure your pension is paid early on the last working day before the 6th.

If you live overseas, your pension can be transferred directly to a bank account in your home country. The payments will be made in your local currency and the amount you receive each month will depend on the exchange rate at the date of transfer.

Don't forget to tell us if you move house or change your bank details.
Your pension is treated as earned income for tax purposes. Tax will normally be deducted before your pension is paid.

If you've any questions about your tax code or the amount of tax deducted from your pension, you should contact the tax office shown below. By law, the Pensions Team can only apply tax codes as instructed by the tax office and is therefore unable to resolve any disputes you may have regarding your tax code.

You can contact the Inspector of Taxes at:

HM Revenue & Customs
Centre 1
East Kilbride
Glasgow G79 1AA

Telephone (if dialling from the UK): 0845 0703 703 (Calls charged at local rate)
Telephone (if dialling from overseas): +44 845 0703 703

When contacting HMRC, you should quote your name and National Insurance number.

Since April 1996, following the introduction of 'self-assessment', all tax payers are obliged by law to keep records of their income and capital gains to enable them to complete a tax return. These records should be kept for 22 months after the end of the tax year to which they relate.

If you're moving overseas you may wish to ask your local tax office for more information about paying your tax when living abroad. You may be eligible to claim an exemption from paying UK income tax. Applications should be sent to:

Financial Intermediates and Claims Office
Fitzroy House
PO Box 46
Nottingham
NG2 1BD

Telephone (if dialling from the UK): 0115 974 2000
Telephone (if dialling from overseas): +44 115 974 2000

A pension advice slip will be issued following any change to your pension payment if it results in your new net monthly pension increasing or reducing by more than £1 from your previous month's net pension payment.

You'll also receive a P60 each April that will confirm your total pension and tax deducted for the previous tax year.

At Diageo, we review pensions in payment on 6 April each year. Before that date, we'll send you a letter to confirm your new level of pension together with an explanation of how this has been calculated. If you've only started to receive your pension within the last 12 months, your first increase may be proportioned.

The method for increasing your pension is different depending on whether you've reached GMP age (age 60 for females and 65 for males).

If you’re under GMP age, the part of your pension earned up to 31 March 2012 will increase each year in line with the Retail Prices Index (RPI) up to a maximum of 5% each year. For pension earned after 31 March 2012 your pension will increase in line with the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) up to a maximum of 5% each year.

If you're a former member of the GrandMet Group Pension Fund, your pension earned up to 31 March 2011 will increase by at least 3% each year.

If you're over GMP age, your pension may comprise two elements - Guaranteed Minimum Pension (GMP) and pension in excess of GMP.

Any GMP earned before 6 April 1988 does not increase.

Any GMP earned after 6 April 1988 is increased by the Scheme up to a maximum of 3% each year. This increase is based on the rise in the CPI over 1 months to the previous September.

The balance of your pension  earned up to 31 March 2012 will increase each year in line with the Retail Prices Index (RPI) up to a maximum of 5% each year.  Any pension earned after 31 March 2012  will increase in line with the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) up to a maximum of 5% each year.

If you're a former member of the GrandMet Group Pension Fund, your pension earned up to 31 March 2011, in excess of any GMP, will increase by at least 3% each year.

Although pensions, in excess of any GMP, are reviewed each 6 April, the increases are based on the rise in the RPI over the previous 12 months to January.

Example

Take a member who is over GMP age and receives a total pension of £9,000 a year. Their pension includes a total GMP of £1,400 a year (of which £400 was earned after 5 April 1988). The pension in excess of the GMP is made up of £6,600 earned up to 31 March 2012 and £1,000 earned after 31 March 2012.

If the rise in the CPI over 12 months to the previous September was 3.5%, the rise in the RPI over the previous 12 months to January was 4% and the rise in CPI over the previous 12 months to January was 3.8%, their pension would be increased as follows:

Increase to pension in excess of GMP
Earned up to 31 March 2012 = £6,600 x 4.0% = £264
Earned after 31 March 2012 = £1,000 x 3.8% = £38

Increase to GMP earned after 5 April 1988 = £400 x 3% = £ 12

New annual pension = £9,000 + £264 + £38 + £12 = £9,314

As well as your benefits from the Scheme, you may also receive a pension from the State when you reach State Pension age.

State Pension age

For men

If you were born before 6 December 1953: you can claim your State pension at 65.

For women

If you were born before 6 April 1950: you can claim your State pension at 60.
If you were born on or after 6 April 1955: you can claim your State pension at 65.
If you were born between 6 April 1950 and 5 April 1955: you will reach State Pension Age during the changeover period when it changes from 60 to 65.

The State Pension age for both men and women is to increase from 65 to 68 between 2019 and 2046.

The first increase, from 65 to 66, will be phased in between March 2019 and October 2020; the second, from 66 to 67, will be phased in between April 2026 and March 2028; and the third, from 67 to 68, between May 2044 and April 2046.

To find out what age you can claim your State pension, use the online calculator at: www.gov.uk/calculate-state-pension/y/age

State Pension Entitlement

If you reach State Pension Age from 6 April 2016 you will be entitled to:

  • Single-Tier State Pension

This replaced the existing Basic State Pension and S2P for everyone who reaches State Pension age from 6 April 2016. To find out more about the Single-Tier State Pension, please see the Government factsheet: ;
www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/181237/single-tier-pension-fact-sheet.pdf

If you reach State Pension Age before 6 April 2016 you will be entitled to:

  • Basic State pension

The State basic pension is a flat-rate amount that you receive if you pay enough National Insurance contributions during your working life. The Government sets the level of the State basic pension each year. It usually goes up in line with inflation. You receive the State basic pension when you reach State Pension Age.

  • Your earnings related pension

As a member of the Diageo Pension Scheme you are contracted out of the second tier of the State pension scheme and as a result pay a lower rate of National Insurance contributions. This second tier used to be called the State Earnings Related Pensions Scheme (SERPS), but since April 2002 is known as the State Second Pension or S2P.

As a consequence of being contracted out of S2P, the Scheme guarantees to provide you with a minimum level of pension at least equivalent to the pension you would have received under S2P.  You will not have built up any benefits under S2P whilst you were a member of the Scheme.

How much pension will I get from the State?

You can find out by filling in a Retirement Pension forecast (form BR19). To get a copy please contact the Future Pension Centre on 0845 3000 168 or fill in the form online at: www.gov.uk/state-pension-statement

The Scheme provides you with peace of mind by providing benefits for your spouse and dependants if you die.

When you die, a pension will normally be payable for life to your spouse. The amount of your spouse's pension payable depends upon the section of the Scheme in which you are a member. If you would like to know the current value of your spouse's pension, please contact the Pensions Team.

If you're unmarried, the Trustees may agree to pay a pension to a dependant. If you want someone to receive a dependant's pension after your death you should complete a Tell us who matters - dependant's pension form.

The Scheme may also provide pensions for your children until they're age 18, or 22 if still in full time education or training.

If you die within five years of retiring, there may also be an additional benefit payable as a lump sum. The Trustees have absolute discretion over who receives this lump sum, but will normally be guided by your wishes, provided you've completed a Tell us who matters - lump sum payment form.

The Scheme is set up and run under a Trust Deed and Rules. The Scheme is managed by a trustee company, Diageo Pension Trust Limited, whose directors are responsible for running the Scheme in the best interests of all the Scheme’s members. The day to day running of the Scheme is delegated to the Pensions Team in Edinburgh.

The Scheme assets are held entirely separate from those of the Company and can only be used for the benefit of members and their dependants. The Trustee manages the Scheme’s investments in accordance with the Trust Deed and Rules and the legislative requirements and it's Statement of Investment Principles.

Changing or closing the Scheme

The Trust Deed and Rules contain provisions for amending, closing or winding up the Scheme.

The Company may terminate the Scheme at any time by giving written notice to the Trustee. In addition, the Company may make changes to the Scheme subject to a period of consultation with members and certain legislative restrictions.

Your benefits are not assignable

Your Scheme benefits are strictly personal and cannot be assigned to any other person or used as security for a loan. Any attempt to do so may result in loss of benefits. Please note however, that should you divorce, the court has certain powers to allocate a proportion of your Scheme benefits to your ex-spouse.

Regulation of the Scheme

The Pensions Regulator

The Pensions Regulator is the regulator of work based pension schemes in the UK.

Its objectives are to:

  • protect the benefits of members of work based pension schemes;

  • to reduce the risk of situations arising which might lead to calls on the Pension Protection Fund; and

  • to raise the standards of administration of work based schemes.   

The Pensions Regulator is based at:

Napier House
Trafalgar Place
Brighton
BN1 4DW

Telephone:  01273 811 800

The Pension Protection Fund

The Pension Protection Fund (PPF) was established to pay compensation to members of eligible defined benefit schemes if their employer becomes insolvent and there are insufficient assets in the scheme to cover PPF levels of compensation.

Broadly speaking the PPF protects pensions in payment where the member is already over normal retirement age at the insolvency event (but with reduced pension increases); and 90% of benefits payable to members who were below this age at the insolvency event, up to a cap. The cap varies according to a schemes normal retirement age but is in the order of £27,700 (2008/09).

The PPF is funded by levies on pension schemes. The levy consists of a number of components; the two main ones are the risk based levy and the scheme based levy. The majority of the levy comes from the risk based element. This focuses on the funding level of the scheme and the strength of the employer.

The Pension Tracing Service

Details of the Scheme have been forwarded to the Pension Tracing Service. If in the future you should wish to contact the Pension Tracing Service to trace any previous pension rights you can write to:

The Pension Tracing Service
The Pensions Service
Tyneview Park
Whitley Road
Newcastle Upon Tyne
NE98 1BA 

Data Protection Act 1998

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, the Trustee of the Scheme is a ‘data controller’ in relation to your ‘personal data’.  Your personal data is information personal to you, and which identifies you, such as your name, address and National Insurance number.  Some of this information may be sensitive (such as details of your health and personal relationships).  As data controllers, the Trustee will process your sensitive and non-sensitive personal data – and that of other members and beneficiaries – for purposes associated with the Scheme (as indicated below). The Trustee may process your personal data itself, or use carefully selected advisors and third parties (data processors) to help it.

Processing personal data about you and others may involve transferring this personal data to third parties (in the UK or any other country) who advise or assist the Trustee, your employer and any business associated with it, prospective purchasers (although in the latter case, where practicable, the Trustee will provide anonymised data), Government bodies and persons authorised by you or by court orders.

Under the Data protection Act 1998, your consent to the Trustee (and any other data processors or other data controllers it uses) processing any personal data about you for any purposes associated with the Scheme is assumed to have been given.

Under the Data Protection Act 1998, as a data subject, you have certain rights in relation to the data we process about you, in particular, you have the right to access the information kept about you.

Keeping you informed

Each year, whilst you are an active member of the Scheme, you will be provided with a personal statement of benefits, which will illustrate the current value of your main Scheme benefits. In addition, if you pay AVCs, you will receive an AVC statement, which will show the value of your AVC fund.

In addition, each year you will receive a newsletter summarising the annual report and accounts and enclosing an Annual Funding Statement of the Scheme.

Any queries about the Scheme and your benefits should be referred to the Pensions Team in Edinburgh, who will always try to provide a prompt and accurate response.

If however, you are not satisfied with the response you receive, the Scheme has an internal disputes resolution procedure to resolve any disputes between the Scheme and its members and beneficiaries.  You can obtain a copy of the procedure from the Pensions Team in Edinburgh.

You may also apply to The Pensions Advisory Service (TPAS) for assistance at any time.  TPAS is available to help members and other beneficiaries who have pension queries or other difficulties, which they have not managed to resolve with their scheme’s trustees or administrators.  TPAS is a Government funded body and will allocate a professional adviser to liaise with the Scheme on your behalf. 

The Pensions Advisory Service
11 Belgrave Road
London
SW1V 1RB

Telephone:  0845 601 2923

Email: enquiries@pensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk

You may also approach the Pensions Ombudsman to decide a matter involving your membership of the Scheme. He can investigate and determine complaints or disputes of fact or law in relation to an occupational pension scheme which are referred to him within his jurisdiction under the Pensions Act 1993.

The Pensions Ombudsman
11 Belgrave Road
London
SW1V 1RB

Telephone:  020 7834 9144

Email: enquiries@pensions-ombudsman.org.uk