A. GENERAL QUESTIONS
1. Do I have to declare my GSF pension for income tax purposes?
All GSF pensions became free of tax on 1 April 1990. Therefore members resident in New Zealand no longer need declare their allowance to the Department of Inland Revenue.
2. What do I need to do if I want to change my bank account?
If you wish to change your bank account Datacom needs to be advised in writing, providing your full bank account number and pay date you want the change to take effect from. You can use the Change in Personal Details Form which can be found on this website under Documents. Please note that your pension (retiring allowance) must be paid to a bank account in your name.
3. Can my pension be paid into an Overseas Bank Account?
If a member intends to reside overseas permanently, depending on the country of residence, their pension (retiring allowance) may be paid to an overseas bank account.
Datacom should be notified of any change of address as a certificate requiring confirmation of the member’s whereabouts is sent annually. Failure to return the certificate could result in suspension of the pension (retiring allowance).
4. Can I assign any of my pension (retiring allowance) to another person?
The GSF Act allows contributing members, when they become entitled to a retiring allowance (or three months prior), to surrender part of their pension and assign an actuarially equivalent amount to a partner or another person. For further information on this option please see Booklet GS2 (found on this website under Documents).
Quotes are available from Datacom for this option. To provide you with a quote, Datacom will need the following information:
- Member details – name, address, and GSF reference number
- Assignee’s details – full name and date of birth
5. Would my GSF entitlements be considered Relationship Property?
Entitlements may also be allocated to separated or divorced partners under agreements made under the Property (Relationships) Act 1976. Where part of a retiring allowance is allocated to a third party, the allowance ceases upon the death of the former contributor, unless they have been made by a permanent surrender (assignment) of part of a retiring
allowance (see question 4).
6. What will my spouse receive when I die?
If a contributor or an annuitant dies a surviving spouse is entitled to a benefit, which is usually a pension.
A spouse may include any man or woman whom the Authority considers to be the wife or husband of the member at the date of death. The Government Superannuation Fund Authority recognises de facto and same sex relationships.
Examples of the information required to support an application for a spouse allowance are as follows:
- Spouse’s birth certificate
- Marriage certificate or evidence of a de facto relationship
- Member’s death certificate
- Spouse’s bank account details
7. Is there any allowance payable to my child if I die?
Where a contributor to GSF dies, whether before or after becoming entitled to a retiring allowance, and leaves a child or children under the age of 16 years, an allowance is paid to the child until that child attains the age of 16 years. At the discretion of the Government Superannuation Fund Authority, this allowance may be extended to assist with the child’s education until the end of the year in which the child turns 18.
In cases where the Authority considers that the child has a physical or mental disability, the child allowance may be paid for such period as the Authority thinks fit.
Examples of the information required to support an application for a child allowance are as follows:
- Child’s birth certificate
- Member’s death certificate
- School attendance verification (if over age 16)
- Child/ Guardian bank account details
B. CEASING GOVERNMENT SERVICE
8. I will be retiring/resigning/made redundant from my position. What do I need to do?
You need to complete form GS20/1 (see Booklet GS20) which advises Datacom of your election on ceasing Government service.
If you are eligible to take your retiring allowance immediately on ceasing Government service you may wish to contact OPSC before you cease service so that we may obtain from Datacom details of the options available to you (see question 13). These options will be provided, in any event, following your cessation of service.
9. I will be retiring/resigning/made redundant from my position.Does my employer need to do anything?
Your employer should confirm the details of your cessation of service to Datacom, advising your last day of paid service for GSF purposes. Datacom will request your employer to complete a GS1000 form.
10. I will be commencing with another Government employer.What should I do?
You should complete form GS1 (see Booklet GS19) and send it to Datacom who will check that you are eligible to continue contributing to GSF and contact your new employer for your commencement details.
It is recommended you contact Datacom if you are considering alternative employment to confirm you will be eligible to continue contributing to GSF through that employer.
11. I have annual leave owing on cessation of Government service. Should this be included in my service?
Any leave taken prior to the last day of employment will be included in the contributory service used to determine your retiring allowance. The earliest your entitlement can come into payment is the day after your last date of employment in Government service.(Note that because of annual leave, your last day of employment may not be the same as your last day at work.)
12. How do I find out my entitlements upon ceasing service?
If you contact Datacom with your details, they will provide you with estimates of your options. Further information on your entitlements on ceasing Government service are available in Booklet GS20.
13. How much notice do we require?
For all options, we will action requests within 5 working days of receiving all the information required to action your request. Please note that if your employer payroll has not been informed of your cessation of service it may take some time to get the required confirmation of cessation from them.
14. When is the earliest you can pay me?
The earliest that your entitlement can come into payment is the day after your last day of employment in Government service. (This may include periods of leave.) See also question 17.
15. I still owe GSF money on ceasing service, what can I do?
You may either pay any monies owed by a lump sum payment, or the amount owing can be deducted from the first instalment of your entitlement. All outstanding amounts must be paid before your entitlement can be paid.
16. How long do I have to make a decision?
If you are entitled to receive payment of a retiring allowance, you normally have 10 working days, from the date you are notified of the options available, to notify Datacom of the options you wish to take. If you do not make a decision within this timescale, your retiring allowance will normally come into payment at the date you do make an election.
No backdating is permitted.
17. I have a charge over my contributions, what happens now?
Datacom will contact the chargeholder and advise them you are ceasing Government service. The chargeholder may either claim an amount from your contributions, or release the charge. Payment of your entitlement will not be made until either the charge isreleased or the contributor has agreed to the amount claimed.
C. LEAVE WITHOUT PAY
18. What do I have to pay?
If you are over age 50, or under age 50 and have not formally elected to cease contributions to GSF prior to going on leave, you must pay contributions on a full cost basis during any period of leave without pay. This includes both your contribution and the equivalent of the employer subsidy.
19. Can I elect to cease contributions while on leave without pay?
If you are under age 50, you may elect to cease contributions while on leave without pay. However, you must formally elect to cease contributions prior to commencing the period of leave. Contributions must be paid up to the effective date of the election.
If you wish to make an election to cease contributions in these circumstances please contact the scheme administrator before you go on leave without pay.
On subsequently reaching age 50, if you have not recommenced contributions, your contributions paid to date will be paid and you will not be eligible to rejoin GSF.
20. Can I pay contributions while on leave?
Yes, you can pay contributions by direct credit to:
Account name: Government Superannuation Fund
Account number: 06 0501 0652170 01
Please ensure you complete the following details:
Particulars: Insert the word DEBT
Reference: Insert your GSF member number here
Other Party: Insert your [member] name & initials
21. How can I pay for the period of leave without pay?
You can pay for the period of leave without pay by way of a lump sum payment within one month of your return to duties or by instalments. If you wish to pay by way of instalment please contact Datacom for further information.
22. Is interest charged?
Unless full payment is made within one month of your return to duties interest is charged.Datacom will be able to provide you with details of any interest payments.
23. What do I get refunded if I pay for the period of leave without pay?
If you are entitled to a refund, you will receive only the contributor’s portion of any payment made in respect of leave without pay. All employer subsidy and interest charges are retained by GSF and do not in any circumstances form part of any refund.
24. Does the employer have to pay anything?
No, the contributor is liable to pay the full cost of leave without pay.
D. PENSION PAYMENT DATES
25. When is my pension paid?
Pensions are paid 4 weekly on a Thursday. See the table below for the comprehensive list of the dates over the next four years.
2015 2016 2017 2018
1 Jan 28 Jan 26 Jan 25 Jan
29 Jan 25 Feb 23 Feb 22 Feb
26 Feb 24 Mar 23 Mar 22 Mar
26 Mar 21 Apr 20 Apr 19 Apr
23 Apr 19 May 18 May 17 May
21 May 16 June 15 Jun 14 Jun
18 June 14 July 13 Jul 12 Jul
16 July 11 Aug 10 Aug 9 Aug
13 Aug 8 Sep 7 Sep 6 Sep
10 Sep 6 Oct 5 Oct 4 Oct
8 Oct 3 Nov 2 Nov 1 Nov
5 Nov 1 Dec 30 Nov 29 Dec
3 Dec 29 Dec 28 Dec 31 Dec