What if I fall ill?

Under the Rules of NAPS, you can draw your pension straight away if you are:

  • retired by BA because of a medical incapacity from which (in the opinion of BA's medical adviser):
    • you will not recover in the foreseeable future and
    • this either prevents you from carrying out your normal duties even after reasonable adjustment, or
    • it prevents you from carrying out appropriate alternative employment where this is offered by the Company;


  • a pilot or engineer officer and you lose your licence due to medical reasons before Normal Retirement Age

Note: Appropriate alternative employment means employment which, in the opinion of the Company, is suitable and reasonable employment taking account of your skills and current salary level.

While you are under your Normal Retirement Age, payment of your ill health pension will be reviewed regularly and the Trustee can vary, suspend or revoke payments in certain circumstances. The Trustee will ask for evidence of your continuing incapacity from time to time and/or suitable evidence of any earnings you may be receiving whilst also receiving an ill health pension.

When you retire we will confirm the date that the Trustee will review your pension for the first time.

How your ill health pension would be worked out:

We calculate your pension as follows:


  • half the service you would have completed between the date you retire on ill health grounds and your current Normal Retirement Age.
    • If you are currently building your pension up at a faster rate (e.g. 1/60 or 1/67), or at the lower rate of 1/130, this portion of your pension is calculated using the standard 1/75 build-up rate.
    • If you are currently paying lower contributions to build your pension up at the lower rate of 1/83, this portion of your pension will be calculated using the 1/83 build-up rate.

If you are in Plan 60, half the potential service to age 60 would be included in the calculation of your ill health pension. If you are in Plan 65, half the potential service to age 65 would be included. Elections for Option 55 are ignored when calculating the half potential service and so half potential service will be calculated to age 60 for Option 55 members.

Ill health pensions and the Annual Allowance (AA)

As your ill health pension is based on enhanced Pensionable Service there is a greater risk that your pension savings in the year of ill health retirement could exceed your AA, resulting in an AA tax charge being due. For more information about the AA and AA tax charges, go to The Annual Allowance (AA).

You can exchange part of your pension for a tax-free lump sum on retirement.

For more information on payment options, such as exchanging part of your pension for a tax-free lump sum, see I'm thinking of drawing my pension.

Serious ill health

If you are suffering from a life threatening illness it may be possible to receive all of your pension as a tax-free lump sum (calculated on reduced terms) whilst continuing to provide a pension for your dependents should you die. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will only allow such payments if you have a short time to live. We will ask you to provide written confirmation from a registered medical practitioner that you have less than 12 months to live. Any lump sum must be paid before age 75, you must have part or all of your Lifetime Allowance available and you must not have previously drawn any of your NAPS benefits. Please contact us if you wish to learn more about this option.


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