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Modified Firefighters Pension Scheme

Calling all On-Call firefighters,  have you heard about the Matthews second options exercise?

blue umbrella over six stacks of coins.

On-call firefighters were not able to join a pension scheme until 6 April 2006. Prior to this, the 1992 scheme was only open to wholetime firefighters.

The exclusion of retained firefighters from the Full Payment Submission (FPS) 1992 was challenged under the Part-Time Workers (Prevention of Less Favourable Treatment) Regulations 2000 and this resulted in a settlement which allowed certain retained firefighters with service between 1 July 2000 and 5 April 2006 to become members of a specially modified version of the 2006 pension scheme which had broadly similar benefits to the 1992 scheme.

These include:

  • an inflation-proofed pension based on your final pay and length of pensionable service
  • an option to convert part of the pension to a lump sum
  • early payment of benefits if you have to retire on grounds of permanent ill-health,
  • death-in-service cover providing a lump sum death grant equal to twice pensionable pay
  • a pension for your surviving husband, wife, civil partner, or co-habiting partner
  • pensions for children
  • normal retirement age of 55

In 2014, an options exercise was carried out and all members in scope were contacted and given the opportunity to join the scheme.

Why is there now a second options exercise?

In the first options exercise, members were only allowed to backdate their pension service to 1 July 2000. Since 2014, there has been a further court case challenging this. As a result, we are now going to carry out a second options exercise to allow those who are eligible to join the scheme, to backdate their service to their start date as an on-call firefighter.

The first options exercise also only looked at service from 1 July 2000. However, the date that should have been used was 7 April 2000.

If you believe that you are eligible, please contact: pensions@bucksfire.gov.uk


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