How to sign up as an employer
If your work is associated with the Church of England, you are welcome to use a section of CWPF. Before you decide to join, check:
- whether the person, or people you intend to enrol meet our membership criteria,
- which CWPF section best suits you and your employees,
- the contribution rates and how we collect these, and,
- Section 75 debts – read our Section 75 leaflet to make sure you understand how this works.
If you would like to join, please get in touch and ask for a ‘participation agreement’.
Before joining, you are welcome to read a copy of our full Trust Deed and Rules.
Membership criteria – who can I enrol?
Anyone can join our Church Worker schemes if they are:
- over 16, and,
- in approved Church employment.
If you are unsure whether someone meets this, get in touch with us and we can check whether they can join.
You can backdate someone’s membership if you want or need to.
Who do I need to enrol?
Automatic enrolment means you need to enrol certain members of staff. Check who you need to enrol at the Pensions Regulators' website.
You can also find our Church specific automatic enrolment FAQs.
Which section should we use?
Church Workers Pension Fund has three sections. Each one is slightly different - members build up pension in different ways and the costs are different. Click on the links below to fund out more about each section.
- Pension Builder 2014 – members build up a guaranteed pot which they can use flexibly at retirement. This is likely to be the most suitable scheme as it offers good protection for members with low Section 75 risk for employers
- Pension Builder Classic – members build up a guaranteed pension which offers great security for members, but can come at an additional Section 75 risk for employers
- Defined Benefit Scheme – due to costs and complexities we don't allow new employers to join this scheme, but you can still find out how this scheme works
What does it cost?
Here are the minimum contribution for each section:
Minimum contribution rate
Pension Builder 2014 is 8%
Pension Builder Classic is 8%
Defined Benefit Scheme is set by the actuary
With Pension Builder 2014 and Pension Builder Classic you can split the contribution between staff and the employer, but we expect the employer to pay at least 4% of this.
All our schemes come with life cover of at least 2x salary. This is mandatory. Here is how much it costs:
- 2x salary costs 0.5%
- 3x salary costs 0.75%
- 4x salary costs 1%
So that life cover is a tax-free benefit in kind, the cost must be covered by the employer.
You can backdate someone’s membership - we'll backdate contributions but not life cover. We only collect this from the point they join.
We collect contributions from your bank account at the end of each month by direct debit, so you do not need to submit any payroll files to us or arrange monthly payments. We take care of this for you.
If anyone joins, leaves or changes hours during the month we will collect extra contributions or refund you the following month.
How to enrol new members
Fill out this spreadsheet, password protect it and send it to us. We will set this person up.
What to do when someone leaves
Fill out the form for your scheme and we will stop contributions. We'll refund anything we over collect.
If the person was part of our scheme for less than 2 years, we will first offer the member the option to transfer their pension to another pension provider. If they don’t want to do this, we will offer them a refund of their contributions, if any, less tax.
We will also refund your contributions, but we keep the amount we collected for life cover.
What to do when someone changes their hours
Fill out this spreadsheet, password protect it and send it to us. Here is a guide on how to complete this spreadsheet.
Email us with any changes if this is easier. We need the persons personal details, their new hours, salary and the date this changed.
Ill health retirement procedure
If you feel someone needs to retire due to their health, the first step should be to explore Occupational Health to see if you can change or adapt their role.
If it becomes clear that they need to retire on health grounds, if they meet our ‘ill health’ criteria we might be able to pay their pension early.
Find out about the steps to go through for ill health retirements.
Keep us up to date with who you are as an employer
We regularly contact you about the Clergy pension scheme. We hold three types of contact details for you. It could be the same person for each contact, or a different person. The contact types are:
- Policy contact – this is the person we should send important or confidential information and news to, such as:
- FRS102 notices
- Actuarial valuation information
- Any updates or changes to legislation
- Contribution contact – this is the person we send the contribution statements to each month. This could be someone in your finance department, or who runs your payroll.
- Personnel contact – this is the person we contact to check retirement or leaving dates. This could be someone in your HR team.
Don’t forget you can update this at any time. If your contact details change, please remember to tell us. This is especially important for contribution contacts as the monthly statements we send have personal information.