Future Armed Forces Pension Scheme
Your pension is going to change but do you know what your current benefits are?
Lord Hutton’s Independent Public Services Pension Commission conducted a review of Public Service Pensions, publishing its final report on 10th March 2011. This initiated the process to reform public sector pensions, including the Armed Forces Pension Schemes –AFPS 75, AFPS 05 and the Reserves Pension Scheme. A Future Armed Forces Pension Scheme (FAFPS) Team has been established within the MOD to develop and introduce the new scheme.
What do we know so far?
• The FAFPS will be introduced no earlier than 1st April 2015.
• There will be additional protection for those individuals that are within 10 years of their Normal Pension Age (55 for AFPS 75 and 05 and 60 for RFPS) on 1st April 2012 ie. Those aged 45 or over on 1st April 2012 (on AFPS 75 and 05) and aged 50 on RFPS will remain on their current schemes and will be unaffected by the reforms.
• Those aged under the age of 45 on 1st April 2012 will automatically be enrolled onto the scheme when it is introduced.
• The MOD and HM Treasury have reached agreement on the protection of accrued rights to AFPS 75 and 05 pension benefits earned by Service personnel prior to enrolment on the new scheme. The value of the pension benefits earned up to the introduction of the new scheme will be protected, including the Immediate Pension, the Early Departure Payment and Lump Sums. These Benefits will remain payable at the time they were expected to be paid in accordance with current scheme rules
• Guidance on accrued rights for other pension schemes e.g. Reserve Forces Pension Scheme will be issued in due course.
How do I have my say?
As part of the development of the FAFPS, the Team will conduct a number of consultation exercises to gain the views of Service personnel on those elements on which Defence has some influence.
The FAFPS Team’s Consultation Exercise consists of unit briefs, focus groups and a survey that will be available both online and in hard copy; personnel need to fully engage in the process to influence the development of the new scheme.
Understanding Your Current Pension
However in order to constructively contribute to the exercise, all personnel should have a basic understanding of the basic benefits of their existing pension scheme whether they are members of the AFPS 75 or 05 schemes.
Guides have been published to inform Service personnel of the basic benefits of the AFPS 75 and 05, copies of which are included here and are available in PSF. The table below also provides a comparison of the current schemes.
Where can I find out more?
• 2012DIN01-063 –Pension rights accrued in Armed Forces Pension Schemes 1975 and 2005
• IBN 03/12 Armed Forces Pension Scheme Reform Accrued Rights
• SPVA – Service Personnel are entitled to receive a Pension Forecast from the SPVA once a year.
• Pensions and Allowances Page on the A1 Spec Support Website – This provides inks to all information released by the FAFPS Team.
• Station Routine Orders and Scrolling News – As and when new information is released this will be made available electronically.
• From your UCA -The FAFPS Team has a network of ‘Unit Change Agents’, essentially a POC on each unit whom the Team uses to disseminate information and to answer generic questions. If you are unsure who your UCA is please contact PSF, but please note that whilst the UCA and HR staff can assist with generic questions, they cannot give financial advice nor answer queries about an individual’s current pension. Those questions the UCA cannot answer will be fed back to the FAFPS Team.