Defined Contribution Pensions

SCHEDULE A MEETINGCall Us: 01 890 3518

We can help

Occupational Pension Transfers
Defined Contribution Transfers
Looking for information?

What we do

We help clients:

Assess their pension options
Get the help they need
Access 25% tax-free lump sum (if eligible)


How to book an appointment:

CALL US: 01 890 3518

Client Case Study

Name | Peter

Age | 45

Peter worked for a manufacturing company in the west of Ireland for 17 years. Recently, the company moved its operations out of Ireland. Since then, Peter has started new employment.

Peter was part of his previous employers’ Defined Contribution schemes for the 17 years he was employed. Both he and his employer contributed equally.

Peter had a current fund value of €174,000 and was looking to assess his options. After discussing with his family and seeking advice, Peter decided to transfer his benefits into his new employer’s Defined Contribution pension scheme.

It is worth noting that this was the option that best suited Peter’s situation. There is no one-size-fits-all approach and all potential options should be considered.

If your situation is similar to either of the above and you would like to assess your options, feel free to contact our team.

We have helped clients who have worked for some of Ireland's largest companies

Did you ever pay into a company pension scheme?

Have you changed or left employment?

Video Time: 0:53

We help clients across Ireland assess their pension options.

Access my pension

Table of Contents

What is a Defined Contribution pension?

A Defined Contribution (DC) scheme is an occupational pension scheme where your own contributions are invested alongside your employer’s contributions. Both contributions are then invested and the proceeds are used as your pension benefits at retirement.

It is worth noting that the value of your payable benefits on retirement will depend on the following factors:

  • The number of contributions paid
  • The investment return achieved less any fees and charges
  • The cost of buying the benefits

Therefore, your contributions will be at the mercy of some variable factors.

Example of a Defined Contribution (DC) Pension Scheme

For example, in many DC schemes, the employee may contribute 5% with the employer matching and also contributing 5% of the member’s earnings.

This means a total of 10% will be invested. Benefits at retirement will be dependent on the above variables. It will not be possible to know in advance exactly what your benefits will be at retirement.

Transferring out of a Defined Contribution Pension Scheme

If you have left or changed employment, you may want to assess your options. Transferring out of a Defined Contribution scheme can be done in various ways.

The options available to you will be dependent on scheme rules and the number of years you were a member. Your options may consist of:

  • Refunding contributions
  • Transferring to a new employers scheme
  • Transferring to a PRB/BOB
  • Transferring to a PRSA
  • Deferred Member

We have taken the time to break down all potential options in more detail.

Difference between DC & DB pensions?

Occupational pension schemes are made up of either a Defined Benefit or a Defined Contribution scheme. The main difference between these is that a Defined Benefit scheme promises a specific income in retirement.

Whereas a Defined Contribution scheme will depend on the contributions made as well as the funds’ investment performance.

Hybrid Schemes

These schemes are neither a full Defined Benefit nor a Defined Contribution scheme. They will have some elements of each. It is worth noting that these schemes would be quite rare but do still exist.

What happens to a Defined Contribution pension on death?

If you are a member of an occupational pension scheme with your employer and die while you are still working, your estate may be eligible to a ‘surrender value’ of your pension.

This means the value of both the employer and employee contributions made to the policy.

However, it is important to note the above will be dependent on specific scheme rules. There are rules as to how benefits will be paid out. Under Revenue rules, a lump sum of up to four times your salary, plus any contributions you made may be eligible to be paid to your estate.

Again, all this will be scheme-dependent. There may also be specific rules surrounding payment if death is within two years of joining the scheme.

Related Posts

How long will my pension last in retirement?

How Long Will My Pension Last In Retirement?

| Defined Benefit Pension, Defined Contribution Pension, Pensions | No Comments
Ah, the million-dollar (or euro in this case) question of how long will my pension last in retirement? Unfortunately, there is no-size-fits-all answer. However, we have taken the time to…
I changed jobs what are my pension options

I Changed Job – What are my Pension Options 2021?

| Defined Benefit Pension, Defined Contribution Pension, Pension transfers, Pensions | No Comments
Assessing your pension options can be difficult. Particularly in an industry full of jargon and acronyms. The aim of this blog is to break down your options and provide you…

Schedule a Complimentary Meeting

Our team hold a combined 100+ years of industry experience

Call us on 01 890 3518 or fill out our quick contact form