If, before joining the Pension Fund, you had a period of service in a UNJSPF member organization, during which you were not a participant in the Pension Fund, under certain circumstances described in Article 23 of the Fund’s Regulations, you can validate this non-contributory service (i.e., make it contributory) in order to increase your total number of years and months of contributory service and thus your future pension entitlement. Please note, if you become a staff member of a member organization of the Fund on an initial appointment of less than 6 months, you do not immediately qualify for participation in the Fund. Once you do qualify for Fund participation you have the option to validate your prior non-contributory period.
You must apply for validation in writing within one year of first becoming a participant in the Fund, or before the date of separation from service, whichever is earlier. For more information on validation, check out our comprehensive Validation page or How To Validate Tutorial.
If you’d like to validate a period of non-contributory service with a member organization of the Pension Fund prior to your participation in the Fund, you can opt to pay retroactive contributions even though during this prior period of service you were not eligible to participate in the Fund. You must apply for validation in writing within one year from first becoming a participant in the Fund, or before the date of separation from service, whichever is earlier. Apply for validation by completing the Notice of Election to Validate PENS.B/1 form and submitting it directly to the Pension Fund or to the Secretary of your local Staff Pension Committee within your employing organization. Your application will be reviewed and if you meet the eligibility requirements, the Pension Fund will calculate the amount that you will have to pay in order to add your prior non-contributory service to your participation.
Upon your election to validate your employing organization will pay its own share of contributions to the Fund for the period concerned. For more information on validation, check out our comprehensive Validation booklet and our interactive tutorial. Please note that if you have participated in contributory service at the Fund previously, you do not have to validate and you should instead refer to information about re-entry into the Fund and restoration.
What is Validation?
Validation is an option which allows you to pay retroactively contributions for period(s) of employment, prior to the date on which your participation commenced, when you were not eligible to participate in the Pension Fund.
Is it costly?
It costs you the same amount of contribution as if you had been in the Pension Fund during this period, plus interest. Your employing organization will pay its own share.
What are the advantages of validating?
Upon separation from service your future monthly pension will be proportional to the number of years and months that you will have contributed. By validating you can increase your total number of years and months of contributory service and thus your future pension entitlement. Validation can also help towards reaching optimum conditions, such as
Accomplishing the minimum 5 years vesting period to be entitled to a periodic benefit upon separation
Reaching the threshold of 25 or 30 years of contributory service, to take advantage of the more preferential reduction rates if you were to consider taking an early retirement benefit.
Validation Deadlines & Conditions
Is there a deadline to validate?
Yes, you have the opportunity to validate only once in each period of participation. You must elect to validate within one year following the date of commencement of your participation. Once the one year deadline has elapsed your right to validate is irrevocably forfeited.
Are there other conditions?
Yes, the prior period(s) of employment should not have been expressly excluded from participation (e.g. Junior Professional Officer contracts, free lance Interpreters and Translators contracts). Participation commenced within 2 years after non-contributory service. All eligible periods of prior employment must be validated. Participation has not been interrupted by a break of more than one year.
What should be done to validate?
If you are interested in validating you have to formally apply for it by completing the Notice of Election to Validate PENS.B/1 Form (also available for download on the MSS website). Send this form to the Pension Fund if you are a United Nations staff member, or to the Secretariat of the Staff Pension Committee of your employing organization if you are employed in one of the specialized agencies.
What will happen next?
By completing this form you are not yet committing yourself to pay. Following receipt of your Notice of Election to Validate, the Pension Fund or the Secretariat of your Staff Pension Committee will review your application, and, if you meet eligibility requirements will calculate the contribution that you will have to pay for the period(s) of prior non-contributory service open for validation. Calculation will be done based on the pensionable remuneration rates that applied during these periods. You will then be informed in writing of the amount due by you.
Is there a deadline to pay for the validation?
Yes, if you decide to pay, you will have a period of 90 days to pay this amount to your employer (not to the Pension Fund), from the date of the notification of the amount due. If you fail to do so within 90 days, your right to validate is irrevocably cancelled.
If you pay the required amount in time, the Pension Fund will ask your employer to pay its share (twice your contributions).
A participant may elect, within one year of the commencement of participation, to validate prior service during which he or she was not eligible under these Regulations for participation, provided that (i) participation succeeded the ending of such service within two years, (ii) the service was the most recent prior to participation and had not been interrupted by a break of more than one year, (iii) participation had not, during such service, been expressly excluded by the terms of appointment, and (iv) the totality of the period open to validation is elected.
A beneficiary of the participant under these Regulations, other than the recipient of a residual settlement, may, if the participant died before the expiry of the period within which the election may be made under (a) above, make the election on the participant’s behalf within such period.
Validation shall be subject to receipt by the Fund of contributions in accordance with article 25(c).