What happens if you're too ill to continue teaching?

If, during your teaching career, you become ill and are unable to work you can apply for ill health retirement. As long as you've qualified for benefits, the ill health retirement provisions could allow you to access your pension before your normal pension age.

There's a lot to consider when applying for ill health retirement and you need to make sure you're making the best decision for you and your family.

If you're still employed and you're considering applying for ill health retirement, you'll need to speak with your employer to confirm that they'll support your application. 

They may then arrange for occupational health support and look at options that could help you remain or return to work. This could include things like reducing your hours, re-deployment, less responsibility or other workplace adjustments.

As part of the procedure, you must provide medical evidence that your illness permanently prevents you from teaching. The cost of providing medical evidence is a matter between you and your employer.

If you are still employed you should obtain two forms from your employer. One is for you to complete with your employer and the other is for the medical evidence to support your application.

If you're no longer employed as a teacher you can contact SPPA for the application form and the medical form you'll need to complete and return to us.

If you left pensionable teaching within 24 months of submitting your application, the medical information sections of your application form must be completed by your former employer.

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