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 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.
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.
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.
The following individuals are eligible for the second options exercise:
Retained firefighters employed on any date between 7 April 2000 and 30 June 2000 (inclusive)
Retained firefighters employed on any date between 7 April 2000 and 30 June 2000 (inclusive) as well as on any date between 1 July 2000 and 5 April 2006 (inclusive)
Retained firefighters employed on any date between 1 July 2000 and 5 April 2006 (inclusive), but not on any date between 7 April and 1 July 2000, who were eligible to take part in the first options exercise but were not given opportunity to do so.
During October, November and December 2023 any members who are eligible will receive a letter outlining the opportunity to join the scheme. They will be required to complete and return an expression of interest form.
Following receipt of an expression of interest, you will be provided with a quote outlining how much it will cost to purchase the service and an indicative estimate of the pension that this will buy. The options exercise will take place over 18 months from October 2023 to March 2025.
More information can be found at The second options exercise (opens in new window)
If you have any questions please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Last updated: Friday, 17 November 2023