April Locum Bs must include extra 0.08% for all payments

A bank holiday weekend approaches and we know you’ll all be looking forward to doing your end of month Locum B forms. But which form to use for April 2017 now that the employer’s pension contribution has been increased from 14.3% to 14.38%; you may have received payment for work carried out before 1 April with the previous 14.3% rate applied; you may also have received payment for April work with the new 14.38% rate….?

We asked the pension agency this very question and their reply is that the new April 2017 Locum B form must be used for pay received in April, even if that means you’re using a mixture of pre-April 2017 as well as the new Locum A forms. Furthermore, the 14.38% rate must apply to all pay received, even for work paid at the 14.3% rate.

Regarding the 0.08% difference, their suggestions are to either

  • Pay this difference yourself, costing 80p for every £1,000 of pensionable pay
  • Invoice the practice separately for the difference
  • Decide to not pension your affected income and return all your employer’s pension to the practice

You must not submit two different Locum B forms - any Locum B submitted for April must be in the new format.

None of these are ideal, but by far the least irksome and most pragmatic option seems to be the first one.

Perhaps the biggest implication will be if you don’t use the new April Locum B form and, some weeks or months down the line, your payment is rejected and you therefore potentially lose out on paying that month’s pension contribution altogether.

We have therefore updated the automatic Locum B forms in LocumDeck, so that when you next generate a Locum B form which includes a Locum A form with the previous 14.3% rate, you’ll get a message advising you of the extra cost payable by you, if you decide to pension it.

And if you’re not already using LocumDeck, now would be a very good time to start!

Ultimately, we’re certain the steps we’ve taken will cause the least disruption, and will continue as always to keep a close eye on any further potential issues.

PS we hope you like what we’ve done with the Locum B form tracker too. Let’s see who can break the record for the longest delay in getting their pension contributions cashed...

6 Responses

  1. Sam
    Thanks for this update but slightly unsure of implications. Does that mean the Form B that I submitted for March at 14.3% is wrong, because although the work I carried out was in March, I was paid by bacs by the Practice at the beginning of April? Surely it is rare that any locum is paid in the actual month they work, and therefore will cause problems for pretty much everyone?
    • Richard Fieldhouse
      Hi Sam, technically speaking, a Locum B form is a "record of pay *received* within a specified month" - and in the development of LocumDeck we've been very careful to make sure that our automagiced Locum B forms only pick up the work that you've marked as 'date paid' for the month you're generating the Locum B for. So yes, I guess it was wrong although hopefully your position is 'low risk' for NHSBSA to reject it B if the payments otherwise all match up. Please do <a href="https://www.nasgp.org.uk/locumdeck/">consider using LocumDeck in the future</a> - we're looking for members to use it, suggest features, help spread the word - in return for completely free use of it, so if that sounds like you...?!
  2. Sally
    I submitted my Locum B form for monies received in April for work I carried out in March, which although pension was paid at the 14.3% rate, I added the extra 0.08% contribution myself, as per your advice, in order that it will not be rejected as incorrectly paid. However, I have received an email from Capita that stated that any work done in March should have pension contributions at the original 14.3%, even if it was received in April. They have returned my cheque as the amount I had sent was therefore wrong. I thought it would be helpful for others to be aware of this as the advice from the NASGP about making contributions up to 14.38% is incorrect.
    • Richard Fieldhouse
      Thanks Sally for submitting this on Saturday evening. We've now had an offline conversation about this, and have made direct contact with the NHS pension (NHSPS) people who have confirmed our advice is correct, it's just that Capita hadn't informed all its staff. I've contacted you separately, and the extremely swift advice from the heads of NHSPS were that you simply resubmit your Locum B whilst they take action with Capita to get them to train their staff properly (!). Hope that helps, and if not please let me know straight away.
  3. BD
    My wife called NHSPS yesterday and was told the opposite. So NHSPS haven't trained their staff properly either! How is anyone supposed to know what to do if the people running this have no idea? My conclusion is that no-one can be penalised for doing anything wrong and for now I intend to do the option that costs least until someone comes back to me specifically to tell me that is wrong.
    • Richard Fieldhouse
      Hi Brian, do you know the name of the person your wife spoke to? If so we can get the head team at NHS pensions to put her straight!

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