Questions of Cash: Why was my case ignored by My Civil Service Pension?

 

Q. I worked for the civil service for eight years during the 1970s, entitling me to a small civil service pension. The previous administrator was Capita and I contacted them in 2011, several years before the pension was due.

I completed a form to commute my lump sum payment to increase my pension. I was told to contact them three months before my 60th birthday and did this in May last year, but then it went quiet.

In September I received a letter informing me that civil service pensions were now administered in-house by My Civil Service Pension.

I contacted MyCSP, providing copies of the emails. After several more emails I finally received a response in December 2014 telling me that the MyCSP "high priority escalations team" were dealing with my case. Then nothing.

I have sent several emails, but not received one response. I have also contacted MyCSP three times by phone and, after 30 minutes or more in a queue, been told each time that someone had just started looking at my case.

My pension is now six months overdue. Googling "problems with MyCSP" shows that, unfortunately, my case is not unique. SF, Hampshire.

A. We raised this with MyCSP. Its spokeswoman responded: "Understandably we are unable to comment on individuals' cases due to data protection legislation. However, I can confirm that MyCSP took over the administration for pensioners and deferred members in mid-September. At the time 1.1 million letters were sent to scheme members informing them of the transfer of administration.

"As a result, MyCSP received an extremely high number of enquiries leading to understandable frustration from members as we couldn't respond as quickly as we would have liked. We would encourage any concerned member to check the scheme website www.civilservicepensionscheme.org.uk for information. If members are still worried about their payments or records they can check with their employer's HR department or contact MyCSP on 0300 123 6666 (+44 1903 835902 for those based overseas), or email contactcentre@mycsp.co.uk, or write to us at MyCSP, PO Box 2017, Liverpool L69 2BU."

You tell us: "All my clarification questions have now been answered and I am expecting a written breakdown as to how my pension has been calculated.

"I have now received my first civil service pension payment and a lump sum has also been paid to cover the late/missed six months of payments. I believe that it was only through the intervention of The Independent that MyCSP finally did their job."

Q. I have used Skype for many years and my laptop automatically connected me to the service. My laptop recently stopped doing that and required me to enter my password – which I could no longer remember. I filled-out Skype's online form to change the password, but this required the card number I used when I opened the account – which I no longer use. I had to go through several years' financial records to find this. I was then able to access my account– and found that details Skype asked for to verify my account I had never actually provided before and so was of no help! MD, Chichester.

A. A spokeswoman for Skype responds: "The easiest way to retrieve a Skype password is for a user to enter their email address at https://login.skype.com/recovery and a password recovery token will be provided that enables them to log into their account."

Questions of Cash cannot give individual advice. But we'll do our best to help if you have a financial dilemma. Email us at: questionsofcash@independent.co.uk

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