Complaints and Appeals

The North East Scotland Pension Fund aims to demonstrate the highest level of customer service at all times, however we understand disputes and issues sometimes arise. We hope that most problems can be dealt with informally, but we recognise that this is not always possible. The Fund takes all complaints seriously and will attempt to resolve issues in an effective and timely manner.

Complaints against the Fund

If you have a complaint relating to information received, the calculation and payment of benefits, or any decision that has been made by the North East Scotland Pension Fund which affects your benefits, you should in the first instance write to: Pensions Manager at North East Scotland Pension Fund, Resources, Business Hub 16, 3rd Floor - West, Marischal College, Broad Street, Aberdeen, AB10 1AB.

If the dispute cannot be resolved by the Fund, the member can begin the Internal Dispute Resolution Process below. This must be made in writing within 6 months following the initial decision.

 

Complaints against your Employer

If you have a complaint relating to:

  • scheme membership e.g. whether you are, or should have been a member
  • contribution rates
  • entitlement of benefits should your employer decide you are not entitled. For example in cases of ill health retirement, or
  • any decision that has been made by your employer which affects your benefits
    you should contact your employer first, giving them the opportunity to resolve the dispute.

If the dispute cannot be resolved by the employer, the member can begin the Internal Dispute Resolution Procedure. This must be made in writing within 6 months following the initial decision.

 

Internal Dispute Resolution Procedure

If a complaint cannot be resolved by the Pensions Manager or your employer, you can invoke the two-stage Internal Dispute Resolution Procedure (IDRP) by completing the appropriate IDRP appeal form.

Any complaints made under the IDRP must be made in writing within 6 months of the date that you are notified of the decision which is being appealed against. The IDRP is summarised below but a full guide along with the appeal form is available in the Publications page.

IDRP - Stage 1
Under Stage 1 of this procedure, the complaint should be directed to the Appointed Person, who is the person nominated to consider stage 1 appeals. The Appointed Person is independent and not involved in the decision against which you are appealing. The Appointed Person will either uphold or dismiss the appeal.

Complaints to North East Scotland Pension Fund:

    • Please write to: The Appointed Person, C/O Chief Officer- Governance/Legal, Level 1 - South, Marsichal College, Broad Street, Aberdeen, AB10 1AB.

Complaints to your Employer:

    • Please write to your employers nominated Appointed Person.

IDPR - Stage 2
If you are not satisfied with the decision of the Appointed Person, under Stage 2 of IDRP you can make an appeal to: The Scottish Ministers, Scottish Public Pensions Agency, 7 Tweedside Park, Tweedbank, Galashiels, TD1 3TE. This must be made in writing within six months of the Stage 1 determination.

If you do not agree with the decision of the Scottish Ministers you have the right of further appeal to the Pensions Ombudsman. If you do not appeal, the Stage 1 decision is binding.

Pensions Ombudsman

If you are unhappy with the decision made by the Scottish Ministers, you can take the case to the Pensions Ombudsman whose decision is final and binding.

The Pensions Ombudsman can be contacted at The Office of the Pensions Ombudsman, 11 Belgrave Road, London, SW1V 1RB or enquiries@pensions-ombudsman.org.uk. For more information visit the Pensions Ombudsman's website.

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