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Prompt locum pay avoids pension problems, NHS BSA warns

30 September 2015

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NHS Business Services Authority (NHS BSA) has issued a reminder to practices that locum’s must be paid promptly after submitting their invoice and pension form.

This is so that locums can submit their pension forms within 10 weeks from the date of working not the date of payment.

A GP locum may ‘pension’ practice-based work and appraisal work however there has to be a clear and direct transaction between the GP locum (as an individual) and the GP surgery, LAT (i.e. NHS England), or LHB (Wales).

The pensionable element is 90% of the fee. Where a GP locum chambers is involved, the locum may still ‘pension’ their income so long as they are paid directly by a surgery.

The release said: “This is a reminder to GP surgeries that when engaging freelance GP locums they must ensure that they pay GP locums promptly i.e. once the locum has submitted their invoice and pension form ‘A’.

“This is because GP locums only have 10 weeks from the date of working to submit their pension forms to the Area Team (England) or Local Health Board (Wales).”

Where a GP surgery pays a freelance GP locum late, it may mean that locum’s NHS pension rights are compromised and the surgery is acting in breach of statutory pensions legislation.