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Firefighters RDS modified scheme
Who can join?

Who can join?

For the provisions of the modified FPS 2006 to apply to you, you must have:

  • been employed as a retained firefighter for a period between 1 July 2000 and

5 April 2006 and, having continued in that employment,

  • elected to become a special member and accepted that you would have to pay retrospective pension contributions, i.e. the "mandatory special period contributions" plus interest.

You would also be eligible for special membership if you were a retained firefighter during the above period, ceased to be a retained firefighter on or after 6 April 2006 but immediately after, and without a break in service, became a regular firefighter and continued as such until the date of your election.

As part of a special exercise, the fire and rescue authority would have informed you of your right to elect for special membership and of the retrospective contributions payable.

There are three categories of special member to whom the modified FPS 2006 applies:

  • special firefighter members
  • special deferred members, and
  • special pensioner members

Special firefighter members

You join the modified FPS 2006 as a special firefighter member if you:

  • took up employment as a retained firefighter before 6 April 2006, and
  • have continued in that or a subsequent employment as a retained firefighter (or as a regular firefighter if appointed as such after 6 April 2006) without a break in continuity of employment until the date of your election to join the modified Scheme.

Special deferred members

You join the modified FPS 2006 as a special deferred member if you:

  • were employed as a retained firefighter for all or part of the period between 1 July 2000 and 5 April 2006 inclusive, and
  • resigned or were dismissed from that employment before the date of your election to join the modified Scheme, and
  • were younger than 55 on the date of resignation or dismissal and not entitled to an ill-health award.

You would become a special deferred member if you:

  • are already a member of the standard FPS 2006 in respect of your post 5 April 2006 retained employment, and subsequently join the modified FPS 2006 as a special firefighter member in respect of the same employment but choose not to convert your standard service to modified service, (i.e. you decide to continue with your standard FPS 2006 membership), or
  • join the modified FPS 2006 as a special firefighter member and leave your employment or opt out of the Scheme before satisfying the conditions for immediate payment of benefits under the Scheme.

Special pensioner members

You join as a special pensioner member if you:

  • were employed as a retained firefighter for all or part of the period between 1 July 2000 and 5 April 2006 inclusive, and
  • resigned or were dismissed from that employment before the date of your election to join the modified Scheme and to pay the mandatory special period contributions, and
    • you had attained age 55 when you left your employment, or
    • you have attained age 60, or
    • you left due to permanent disablement and the conditions for ill-health retirement are satisfied.

You would become a special pensioner member if you:

  • join the modified FPS 2006 as a special firefighter member and subsequently leave in circumstances where a retirement pension can be paid, or
  • join as, or become, a special deferred member and the conditions are satisfied for the deferred pension to come into payment.

In addition to the above three special categories, the modified Scheme offers pension cover for those who may have ceased employment on or after 1 July 2000 and before

6 April 2006 in circumstances where an ill-health award would have been made, had the person had access to the Scheme. It also makes provision for payment of a death grant in the event of death during this period. The fire and rescue authority will have contacted those affected by these provisions with a personalised statement of the arrangements. They are not covered in this Guide.

Once admitted to the modified FPS 2006 as a special firefighter member, if you become unfit for "operational" work but can still carry out other duties appropriate to your role, provided there is no break in the continuity of your employment you can remain a member.