Universities Superannuation Scheme

We advise many current and retired academics on all aspects of their retirement planning. This has become very complicated in recent years and it appears that it will get even more so very soon…

AS a member of USS, you currently automatically join the USS Retirement Income Builder. In this type of defined benefit pension scheme (career average) your benefits are based on each year’s salary throughout the period of membership. You currently accrue a pension of 1/75th of your salary and a cash lump sum of 3/75ths of your salary for each year of service. At the end of each year, your benefits for that year are calculated and added to previous years. This is then revalued every year in line with standard pension increases.

Your employer currently pays a monthly contribution equal to 21.4% of your salary, while you pay 9.8%.

Your benefits at retirement are based on a formula that takes account of your salary each year and inflation.


USS Investment Builder is an optional section members can join in addition to the USS Retirement Income Builder. For earners over the salary threshold (currently £59,883.65), you join automatically.
Your benefits at retirement are based on the contributions made by you and your employer to the USS Investment Builder and the performance of the funds that your contributions are invested in.

For those of you that have been in the scheme for a number of years, there additionally will be benefits that have accrued on a different basis and we can guide you through what all of these mean and more importantly what they are likely to provide to you. 

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