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General

What Is The Scheme About?

The Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) which commenced in 2004 is fully funded, privately managed, with third party in custody of the funds and assets and is based on individual accounts. It ensures that everyone who has worked receives his/her retirement benefits as and when due.

Is The Scheme Mandatory For Every Worker?

The CPS was extended in 2014 to cover employees in the public, state and private sector with at least three (3) employees and workers under the Federal Capital Territory. It is expected that those in the informal sector will soon be brought under the scheme.

How Does It Work?

Every employee or contributor under the new pension scheme is expected to open a Retirement Savings Account (RSA) in his/her name with a Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) of his/her choice into which all his/her contributions and returns on investment are paid. An employee shall make monthly contributions of a minimum of 8% (formerly 7.5%) of the total of his/her monthly emoluments (i.e., monthly basic salary, transport allowance and housing allowance) while the employer in turn also contributes 10% (formerly 7.5%) into the employee’s RSA.

Is There A Regulatory Body And What Is Its Function?

The National Pension Commission (PenCom) is empowered by the Pension Reform Act 2004 (amended by Pension Reform Act 2014) to supervise and regulate the new pension scheme. The National Pension Commission issues licences to PFAs and Pension Fund Custodians (PFC), regulates their activities and generally formulates, directs and oversees the overall policy guidelines on pension matters in Nigeria.

How Is It Different From Any Of The Previous Pension Schemes In The Country?

Most of the old pension schemes were not fully funded. Therefore, upon retirement, there were no ready funds to pay the pensioners. The new pension scheme is fully funded. Money is contributed into individual employee’s Retirement Savings Account (RSA) and when he/she retires; there will be money in his/her RSA to pay his pension.

How Much Of My Salary Is Being Deducted?

A minimum of 8% (formerly 7.5%) of the total of your monthly emoluments (i.e., monthly basic salary, transport allowance and housing allowance) is deducted and your employer contributes another 10% (formerly 7.5%), thus bringing the total minimum monthly contribution to 18%.

What Role Does My Employer Play In The Scheme?

Asides the 10% (formerly 7.5%) monthly emolument contributed by an employer into the employee’s RSA, your total contributions will be remitted by your employer directly to a Pension Fund Custodian and will be managed and invested by the Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) of the employee’s choice.

What Is Being Done With My Contributions?

Your contributions are being invested by your PFA in line with the guidelines issued by the National Pension Commission and income from such investment is also credited into your RSA.

When Can I Access My Funds?

Access to the RSA will only be allowed upon retirement. If an employee retires at the age of 50 years or more he/she can have immediate access to the RSA. Similarly, if an employee retires before the age of 50 years due to mental or physical incapacity, he or she can have immediate access to his/her RSA. Whereas an employee under the age of 50 years who resigns or is disengaged in accordance with the terms and conditions of employment will not access the RSA until after four (4) months of such retirement if he/she does not secure another employment.

Can I Withdraw My Entire Balance At Once?

Withdrawal from your RSA can only be in line with the Act and regulations issued by the National Pension Commission.

How Do I Access My Funds And How Long Will It Take?

At retirement or loss of job, you are to contact your PFA with all necessary supporting documents as evidence of your exit from employment to enable them determine and advise you on benefits due to you in line with the Act and guidelines issued by the Commission. Accessing your benefit takes between 5 days to 2 weeks once you have submitted all necessary documents.

How Safe Is The Scheme?

All those managing or keeping custody of pension funds and assets are licensed by and continually regulated and supervised by the National Pension Commission. The functions of the Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) and Custodian are clearly spelt out in the Pension Act 2014.The Act and investment guidelines provide adequate safeguards against the misuse of the pension funds by any operator as it clearly states where, what and how pension Funds are to be invested.

What Is The Guarantee That Another Government Will Not Come And Reverse The Scheme?

The Government cannot tamper with the pension funds in your RSA, because the Government does not have access to the account. Besides, the Government is primarily concerned with ensuring the safety of the contributions in your RSA by the enforcement of strict rules and regulations through the National Pension Commission.

In The Event Of Death, How Easy Will It Be For My Beneficiary To Access My Funds (Documents Required And Why Is A Letter Of Administration Required)?

Where an employee who has been contributing under the new pension scheme dies before his/her retirement, upon receipt of a valid Will admitted to Probate or Letter of Administration confirming the beneficiaries under the estate of the deceased employee, the PFA shall with the approval of the Commission release the amount standing in the RSA of the deceased to the personal representative of the deceased or to any other person as maybe directed by a court of competent jurisdiction in accordance with the terms of the Will or personal law of the deceased employee as the case maybe.

How Long Will I Continue To Receive Pension Payments After Retiring?

For as long as there remains a balance in your Retirement Savings Account.

How Much Am I Charged?

The PFA charges fees for the services being rendered on the RSA subject to such guidelines as may be issued by the National Pension Commission from time to time. Currently a maximum monthly fee of N100 and N5 for VAT for every monthly contribution is allowed under the regulation.

Will My PFA Continue To Invest My Funds After I Retire?

Yes, your PFA will continue to invest any amount standing to the credit of your RSA and the income from investment credited into your RSA as long as you are remain on a program withdrawal with a PFA after retirement.

How Can I Contact My PFA?

We have various touch points through which their RSA holders can contact them. You can reach us via telephone on 0700 CALL ARM (07002255276); or email at info@armpension.com or helpdesk@armpension.com; or live chat here, or through our social media channels (please see links at the top and bottom of this page); or walk into the nearest office to you, see branches here. You can also drop us a message here or visit any of our service centers close to you, see locations here.

How Can I Monitor My Pension Balance?

Your Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) in addition to sending you an SMS notification once a remittance from your employer has been processed into your RSA, will also send regular/periodic statements of accounts showing all your contributions and income from investments to your preferred address. You can also view your statement online by obtaining log in details from your PFA.

Can I Change My PFA?

An employee or contributor under the PRA 2014 has the freedom to move his account, once a year, from one PFA to another without giving any reason(s). This window will soon be opened by the National Pension Commission.

What Happens If I Change Jobs?

Movement from one employment to another does not affect pension under the new scheme. The reform has removed the bottleneck associated with transfer of service from one organisation or sector to another, especially with regard to qualification for pension and the sharing formula for payment of pension as between employers.

What Can I Do If My Employer Makes Deductions Without Remitting?

An employer who deducts pension contributions from employee salaries is under obligation to remit such contributions to a PFA chosen by the employee. Any employer who fails to do so is liable to pay a penalty of 2% per month for any of such contributions not remitted once the employee brings this to the attention of the National Pension Commission.

What Are The Withdrawal Options Available To Me After Retiring?

A holder of RSA upon retirement or attaining the age of 50 years (whichever is later) can utilize the amount credited to his/her RSA for the following benefits; Lump sum (provided the amount left after the lump sum shall be sufficient to procure a programmed withdrawal or annuity for life); programmed monthly or quarterly withdrawals calculated on the basis of an expectant life span annuity for life purchased from a life insurance company licensed by the National Insurance Commission with monthly or quarterly payments Where an employee voluntarily retires, disengages or is disengaged from employment before attaining the age of 50 years, the employee may withdraw an amount not exceeding 25% of the total amount credited to his/her RSA after four (4) months if the employee does not secure another employment.

I Am Unhappy With My PFA, Who Can I Report To?

An employee or a beneficiary of a RSA who is dissatisfied with the decision of a PFA or employer in respect of pension matters under this Act, may request, in writing, that such decisions be reviewed by the National Pension Commission with a view to ensuring that such decision is made in accordance with the provisions of the Pension Reform Act (2014) or any regulation made there under.

What Happens If My PFA Folds Up?

The pension funds in the Retirement Savings Account (RSA) are kept by the PFC and as such the liquidation of the PFA will not affect the fund assets. Besides, every PFA is expected under the Pension Act 2014 to maintain a statutory reserve fund as contingency fund to meet claims for which it may be liable as maybe determined by National Pension Commission.

Military Personnel

What Is The Scheme About?

The Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) which commenced in 2004 is fully funded, privately managed, with third party in custody of the funds and assets and is based on individual accounts. It ensures that everyone who has worked receives his/her retirement benefits as and when due.

Is The Scheme Mandatory For Every Worker?

The CPS was extended in 2014 to cover employees in the public, state and private sector with at least three (3) employees and workers under the Federal Capital Territory. It is expected that those in the informal sector will soon be brought under the scheme.

How Does It Work?

Every employee or contributor under the new pension scheme is expected to open a Retirement Savings Account (RSA) in his/her name with a Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) of his/her choice into which all his/her contributions and returns on investment are paid. An employee shall make monthly contributions of a minimum of 8% (formerly 7.5%) of the total of his/her monthly emoluments (i.e., monthly basic salary, transport allowance and housing allowance) while the employer in turn also contributes 10% (formerly 7.5%) into the employee’s RSA.

Is There A Regulatory Body And What Is Its Function?

The National Pension Commission (PenCom) is empowered by the Pension Reform Act 2004 (amended by Pension Reform Act 2014) to supervise and regulate the new pension scheme. The National Pension Commission issues licences to PFAs and Pension Fund Custodians (PFC), regulates their activities and generally formulates, directs and oversees the overall policy guidelines on pension matters in Nigeria.

How Is It Different From Any Of The Previous Pension Schemes In The Country?

Most of the old pension schemes were not fully funded. Therefore, upon retirement, there were no ready funds to pay the pensioners. The new pension scheme is fully funded. Money is contributed into individual employee’s Retirement Savings Account (RSA) and when he/she retires; there will be money in his/her RSA to pay his pension.

How Much Of My Salary Is Being Deducted?

A minimum of 8% (formerly 7.5%) of the total of your monthly emoluments (i.e., monthly basic salary, transport allowance and housing allowance) is deducted and your employer contributes another 10% (formerly 7.5%), thus bringing the total minimum monthly contribution to 18%.

What Role Does My Employer Play In The Scheme?

Asides the 10% (formerly 7.5%) monthly emolument contributed by an employer into the employee’s RSA, your total contributions will be remitted by your employer directly to a Pension Fund Custodian and will be managed and invested by the Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) of the employee’s choice.

What Is Being Done With My Contributions?

Your contributions are being invested by your PFA in line with the guidelines issued by the National Pension Commission and income from such investment is also credited into your RSA.

When Can I Access My Funds?

Access to the RSA will only be allowed upon retirement. If an employee retires at the age of 50 years or more he/she can have immediate access to the RSA. Similarly, if an employee retires before the age of 50 years due to mental or physical incapacity, he or she can have immediate access to his/her RSA. Whereas an employee under the age of 50 years who resigns or is disengaged in accordance with the terms and conditions of employment will not access the RSA until after four (4) months of such retirement if he/she does not secure another employment.

Can I Withdraw My Entire Balance At Once?

Withdrawal from your RSA can only be in line with the Act and regulations issued by the National Pension Commission.

How Do I Access My Funds And How Long Will It Take?

At retirement or loss of job, you are to contact your PFA with all necessary supporting documents as evidence of your exit from employment to enable them determine and advise you on benefits due to you in line with the Act and guidelines issued by the Commission. Accessing your benefit takes between 5 days to 2 weeks once you have submitted all necessary documents.

How Safe Is The Scheme?

All those managing or keeping custody of pension funds and assets are licensed by and continually regulated and supervised by the National Pension Commission. The functions of the Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) and Custodian are clearly spelt out in the Pension Act 2014.The Act and investment guidelines provide adequate safeguards against the misuse of the pension funds by any operator as it clearly states where, what and how pension Funds are to be invested.

What Is The Guarantee That Another Government Will Not Come And Reverse The Scheme?

The Government cannot tamper with the pension funds in your RSA, because the Government does have access to the account. Besides, the Government is primarily concerned with ensuring the safety of the contributions in your RSA by the enforcement of strict rules and regulations through the National Pension Commission.

In The Event Of Death, How Easy Will It Be For My Beneficiary To Access My Funds (Documents Required And Why Is A Letter Of Administration Required)?

Where an employee who has been contributing under the new pension scheme dies before his/her retirement, upon receipt of a valid Will admitted to Probate or Letter of Administration confirming the beneficiaries under the estate of the deceased employee, the PFA shall with the approval of the Commission release the amount standing in the RSA of the deceased to the personal representative of the deceased or to any other person as maybe directed by a court of competent jurisdiction in accordance with the terms of the Will or personal law of the deceased employee as the case maybe.

How Long Will I Continue To Receive Pension Payments After Retiring?

For as long as there remains a balance in your Retirement Savings Account.

How Much Am I Charged?

The PFA charges fees for the services being rendered on the RSA subject to such guidelines as may be issued by the National Pension Commission from time to time. Currently a maximum monthly fee of N100 and N5 for VAT for every monthly contribution is allowed under the regulation.

Will My PFA Continue To Invest My Funds After I Retire?

Yes, your PFA will continue to invest any amount standing to the credit of your RSA and the income from investment credited into your RSA as long as you are remain on a program withdrawal with a PFA after retirement.

How Can I Contact My PFA?

All PFAs have various touch points through which their RSA holders can contact them. This can be via telephone; email; live chat, or through any social media used by your PFA or walk into their nearest office to you. List of office locations are usually mentioned on the PFAs website.

How Can I Monitor My Pension Balance?

Your Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) in addition to sending you an SMS notification once a remittance from your employer has been processed into your RSA, will also send regular/periodic statements of accounts showing all your contributions and income from investments to your preferred address. You can also view your statement online by obtaining log in details from your PFA.

Can I Change My PFA?

An employee or contributor under the PRA 2014 has the freedom to move his account, once a year, from one PFA to another without giving any reason(s). This window will soon be opened by the National Pension Commission.

What Happens If I Change Jobs?

Movement from one employment to another does not affect pension under the new scheme. The reform has removed the bottleneck associated with transfer of service from one organisation or sector to another, especially with regard to qualification for pension and the sharing formula for payment of pension as between employers.

What Can I Do If My Employer Makes Deductions Without Remitting?

An employer who deducts pension contributions from employee salaries is under obligation to remit such contributions to a PFA chosen by the employee. Any employer who fails to do so is liable to pay a penalty of 2% per month for any of such contributions not remitted once the employee brings this to the attention of the National Pension Commission.

What Are The Withdrawal Options Available To Me After Retiring?

A holder of RSA upon retirement or attaining the age of 50 years (whichever is later) can utilize the amount credited to his/her RSA for the following benefits; Lump sum (provided the amount left after the lump sum shall be sufficient to procure a programmed withdrawal or annuity for life); programmed monthly or quarterly withdrawals calculated on the basis of an expectant life span annuity for life purchased from a life insurance company licensed by the National Insurance Commission with monthly or quarterly payments Where an employee voluntarily retires, disengages or is disengaged from employment before attaining the age of 50 years, the employee may withdraw an amount not exceeding 25% of the total amount credited to his/her RSA after four (4) months if the employee does not secure another employment.

I Am Unhappy With My PFA, Who Can I Report To?

An employee or a beneficiary of a RSA who is dissatisfied with the decision of a PFA or employer in respect of pension matters under this Act, may request, in writing, that such decisions be reviewed by the National Pension Commission with a view to ensuring that such decision is made in accordance with the provisions of the Pension Reform Act (2014) or any regulation made there under.

What Happens If My PFA Folds Up?

The pension funds in the Retirement Savings Account (RSA) are kept by the PFC and as such the liquidation of the PFA will not affect the fund assets. Besides, every PFA is expected under the Pension Act 2014 to maintain a statutory reserve fund as contingency fund to meet claims for which it may be liable as maybe determined by National Pension Commission.

The Business Combination

As A Retirement Savings Account (RSA) Holder, What Do I Stand To Benefit From The Combination?

Our combination will result in a richer and more diversified service platform that provides you with the following benefits, amongst others:

  • Enhanced quality service delivery
  • Highly competitive investment returns
  • Responsive relationship management
  • Expanded customer reach, and increased number of access points
  • Economies of scale and reduced operating costs

What Initiated The Decision To Combine The Businesses?

The business combination is an opportunity to combine the strengths of both businesses, to further strengthen our well-established positions in existing markets, and consolidate our competitive strengths and leadership within the Pension Industry

It will result in one of the industry foremost and largest PFAs; a large, strong and secure entity, which is even better positioned to serve our many customers.

The New Combined Entity

From Which Locations Will ARM Pension Managers Operate?

 ARM Pension Managers will retain all current locations of both entities as we conclude the integration process. Accordingly, you may visit any of the locations of either ARM Pension Managers or First Alliance that you may already be familiar with, or you can call or email us to obtain location information. Should there be any future changes, these will be promptly communicated to you.

What Happens To My Money If I Want To Change Jobs?

Rest assured, changing jobs does not affect your ability to retain your RSA. Simply notify us of your new employment status, and notify your new employer that you are a member of ARM Pension Managers RSA Fund (providing your PIN), and your records will be updated accordingly. Your employer will then be expected to make your contributions to us regularly.

Will My Pin Change As A Result Of This Combination?

No, you will retain your original unique Personal Identification Number (PIN). In accordance with PENCOM regulation, your PIN remains consistent through the entire duration of your RSA account, as this further ensures your security

Which Custodian (S) Will Arm Pension Managers Use?

For the meantime, Custodial Services for the combined company will be provided by:

  • First Pension Custodian
  • UBA Pension Custodian
  • Zenith Pension Custodian

Any future changes to this will be promptly communicated to you.

What Long-Term Benefits Are There To The Investment Approach Employed By Arm Pension Managers? What Is Its Track Record?

Apart from the evidence of our strong track record, acknowledged professional acumen and client-centric approach to pension fund management and administration; the underlying focus of our business is to help all our clients maintain an acceptable standard of living during their retirement years. ARM has extensive experience and demonstrated expertise in structuring pension portfolios with a strong focus on security and sustainable growth on contributions.

Importantly, ARM Pension Managers RSA fund has successfully delivered exemplary growth since inception, with significant returns to our RSA holders, despite turbulent financial market conditions.

In addition, The ARM Group – parent company of ARM Pension Managers, which was established in 1994 as an asset management firm with a global perspective, is recognized as a leader in investment management. It offers a range of services including non-pension asset management, pension fund administration, trust services, real estate management and development, infrastructure finance and development, investment banking and financial advisory services

For the last fifteen years, ARM has successfully managed Nigeria most widely held mutual fund, ARM Discovery Fund, with over 20,000 investors

How Will The Transition Impact The Value Of My Holdings?

The value of your individual RSA account remains intact. The RSA funds of the combined entity (ARM Pension Managers) will be managed under the same umbrella to take advantage of the high quality research and investment management capability for which ARM is known. To accomplish this, participants in the First Alliance RSA fund will be transitioned to the ARM Pension Managers RSA Fund, such that in the transition process, the value of each RSA holder account is maintained. Thereafter, ARM Pension Managers will continue to apply rigorous research to investing your funds, and this would enable us grow your account over time.

How Safe Is My Money With Arm Pension Managers?

ARM Pension Managers has earned a pre-eminent reputation in investment management and research built on a track record of performance. Our proven commitment to integrity, ethical business practices and sound corporate governance provide further assurance. Consequently, you can continue to expect to benefit from enhanced quality service, strong and sustained investment performance and robust technology systems, and operational processes designed and operated to ensure the safety and security of your retirement funds.

What Would The Combined Company Be Called?

The combined entity will trade as: ARM PENSION MANAGERS (PFA) LTD, also known as ARM Pensions. It will remain a subsidiary of Asset & Resource Management Company Ltd. (ARM), one of Nigeria most prominent and respected financial service brands.

Former First Alliance Pensions and Benefits Clients

Who Do I Contact If I Have Any Questions About The Business Combination?

 You may contact ARM Pension Managers via:

Email: helpdesk@armpension.com
Phone: +234 (1) 271 5000, +234 (1) 271 5005
Website: www.armpension.com

You may also visit any of our locations closest to you, and our Customer Relationship Officers will be happy to address your enquiries.

Where Do I Submit Correspondence In Respect Of My Account With First Alliance Pension And Benefits, E.G. Change Of Employer, Change Of Name, Pay Slips, Letter Of Promotion Etc?

Any queries or documentation that you need to send to First Alliance Pension and Benefits can now be sent to one of the following:

Email: info@armpension.com or helpdesk@armpension.com

Lagos:
Plot 698 Sanusi Fafunwa,
Victoria Island, Lagos
+234 (1) 271 5005
+234 (1) 271 5000

Abuja:
29 Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent,
Wuse II, Abuja,
+234 (9) 461 1107
+234 (9) 461 2667
+234 (9) 461 8405

Alternatively, you may visit our website or call us for more information.

Website: www.armpension.com

Will I be Able to Check My RSA Balance On-Line? What About Periodic Statements?

Yes you can continue to check your RSA balance, and access your periodic statements online as you have always done, at www.firstalliancepension.com.

However, following the business combination, you will be able to view your RSA balance online via the new entity website at www.armpension.com. You will also be able view and print your periodic statements, and access historical records of contributions on line.

I Am Nearing Retirement, Who Will Process My Benefits Now That The Merger Is Complete? Will My Benefits Be Paid Promptly?

Your benefits will continue to be efficiently processed by ARM Pension Managers, the enlarged entity. You can fully expect to receive your benefits promptly as and when due.

As An Existing Retiree Registered With First Alliance, What Happens To The Payment Of My Pension Benefit? Have I Lost The Funds?

Rest assured, your funds are secure. You will continue to receive and enjoy your pension payments as, and when due.