Joining the Public Capitalisation Scheme / Retirement Certificates Scheme
Joining the Public Capitalisation Scheme (Regime Público de Capitalização – RPC) allows an amount to be deducted from you every month, which is converted and saved as Retirement Certificates (Certificados de Reforma). The value of the Retirement Certificates accumulates over time and can be used when you retire.
Retirement Certificates are a way to invest and save.
Learn where you can carry out the service and what are the advantages of each channel
Any person covered by a compulsory social welfare scheme:
Caixa Geral de Aposentações [General Pensions Fund],
Welfare Fund for Barristers and Solicitors,
Voluntary Social Insurance.
How retirement certificates scheme work?
By joining this scheme, you authorise Social Security to deduct a certain amount from your bank account every month, for a period of 1 year. The amount is taken out on the 13th day of every month.
Your employer may, if it chooses, take over the payment of these contributions. When paid by the employer, these contributions are not subject to social security charges.
Renewal of the scheme is automatic after the first year, unless you decide to cancel. However, you may only withdraw from the scheme in the month of February.
You will receive information by post or email, in January each year, about renewing your Retirement Certificates and about your current account.
What amount is deducted from your account?
When you join the Retirement Certificates scheme, you will be able to choose how much you want to be deducted each month. The amount deducted can be changed once a year, during the renewal period.
You can choose the contribution rate you want:
6% (you can only choose this amount if you are over 50 years of age).
The percentage of remuneration chosen will be deducted on the 13th day of every month from the bank account indicated, which serves as a reference for contributions to your compulsory social welfare scheme.
If the deduction cannot be made from your account one month, a penalty of EUR 0.50 (fifty euro cents) will be applied to the value of your certificates. If the deduction is not made for 3 consecutive months, your Retirement Certificates account will be suspended. The value that the certificates have already accumulated will not be lost, however.
How can I consult the retirement certificates I have already accumulated?
When you join the Retirement Certificates Scheme, a personal account is created for you. The amount deducted each month is converted into certificates, which are kept in that account.
You can consult your account on Social Security Direct. Click on ‘Pensões’ [Pensions] and then ‘Certificados de Reforma’ [Retirement Certificates].
You will receive information by post or email in January each year regarding your current account.
When will I be able to use the value of the retirement certificates?
The retirement certificates that accumulate over time will be available in the month after the month in which you start to receive an old-age pension, retirement pension or total and permanent invalidity pension.
You can choose to:
receive the total amount in one go;
transfer the total amount to the bank account of your children and/or spouse;
convert the value of the certificates into a monthly lifetime annuity;
receive or transfer only a part of it, converting the rest into a monthly lifetime annuity.
How much do Retirement Certificates gain in value over time?
You can consult the historical appreciation (increase in value) of Retirement Certificates on the Social Security website. Please bear in mind that past value gains are no guarantee of future ones.