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Additional voluntary contributions (AVCs)

Additional voluntary contributions (AVCs) are contributions that you can make in addition to your normal contributions to an occupational pension scheme in the public or private sector to increase your retirement benefits.

AVCs are a defined contribution pension arrangement provided for your scheme usually by an insurance company or specialist pension provider. The fund available at retirement is determined by the combination of your contributions and any investment returns on these contributions less charges.

You can choose the rate at which to contribute AVCs, subject to a maximum rate determined by Revenue and these AVCs attract tax relief, subject to Revenue limits.

AVCs are only permitted if the rules of the particular scheme permit AVCs to be made. If the rules do not permit AVCs to be made then a standard personal retirement savings account must be offered by your employer for the purpose of making AVCs.

If you make AVCs, then your benefits will be subject to the rules of your scheme and the Revenue limits applying to occupational pension schemes.