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The Firefighters' Pension Scheme (Wales) Order 2007

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CHAPTER 2PURCHASE OF ADDITIONAL SERVICE

Purchase of additional service

5.—(1) A person who satisfies the conditions specified in paragraph (2) may, in accordance with the following provisions of this Chapter, elect to purchase additional service for the purpose of securing increased benefits under this Scheme.

(2) The conditions are that the person—

(a)is a firefighter member of the Scheme,

(b)is not a pension credit member, and

(c)would be entitled to reckon less than forty years' pensionable service at normal retirement age.

(3) Additional service may be purchased as years or part of a year, but the aggregate of—

(a)the period purchased,

(b)the person’s pensionable service up to the date of the purchase, and

(c)the person’s prospective service from that date to normal retirement age,

must not exceed forty years.

(4) Additional service may be purchased—

(a)by payment of a lump sum calculated in accordance with tables provided by the Scheme Actuary; or

(b)subject to paragraphs (5) and (6), by deduction from the person’s pensionable pay of periodical contributions of such percentage of that pay as are determined by the Scheme Actuary.

(5) An authority may permit a part-time regular firefighter to purchase additional service by periodical contributions at a rate that bears to the percentage determined by the Scheme Actuary the same proportion as that firefighter’s pensionable pay bears to the pensionable pay of a full-time regular firefighter serving in the same role.

(6) An authority may permit a retained or volunteer firefighter to purchase additional service by periodical contributions; and in such a case they must calculate the amount of the contributions by applying the rate determined by the Scheme Actuary to the firefighter’s reference pay.

Election to purchase additional service

6.—(1) An election to pay a lump sum—

(a)must be made by written notice given to the authority not later than twelve months after the date on which the person last became employed by the authority as a firefighter, and

(b)if the sum is not paid within three months after the date on which notice was given, must be treated as not having been made.

(2) An election to pay periodical contributions must be made by written notice given to the authority at least two years before the person’s normal retirement age, but no such election may be made where the person and the authority have agreed that the person will leave the Scheme with an entitlement under any of rules 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6 of Part 3.

(3) Unless paragraph (1)(b) applies, an election under this rule—

(a)takes effect on the day on which the written notice is received by the authority, and

(b)is irrevocable once the lump sum has been paid or, as the case may be, the first contribution has been deducted.

Duration of periodical contributions and premature cessation

7.—(1) Subject to paragraph (2), where a person has elected under rule 6(2) to pay periodical contributions, they are payable from the person’s next birthday and continue to be payable until normal retirement age.

(2) Paragraph (1) ceases to apply to a person who leaves the authority’s employment before normal retirement age—

(a)where the person is entitled to a pension under rule 3 of Part 3 (deferred pension), on that person’s last day of service,

(b)where the person becomes entitled to a second pension under rule 7 of that Part (entitlement to two pensions), on that person’s last day of service in the second period of employment,

(c)on the date on which the person ceases to be employed by any authority, or

(d)on the date on which any contributions election takes effect.

(3) Where a sub-paragraph of paragraph (2) applies, the period of additional service purchased up to the date referred to in that sub-paragraph must be treated as if it were the period ascertained in accordance with the formula:

where—

  • A is the number of 60ths of additional service which the person elected to purchase,

  • B is the period in respect of which contributions have been made, and

  • C is the period in respect of which contributions would, but for the cessation of the person’s employment, have been made in accordance with the election.

(4) The period of additional service calculated in accordance with paragraph (3) is treated—

(a)where the person qualifies for an ordinary pension (rule 1 of Part 3), as part of the pensionable service on which the ordinary pension is calculated;

(b)where the person qualifies for a deferred pension (rule 3 of Part 3), as part of the pensionable service on which the deferred pension is calculated;

(c)where the person takes member-initiated early retirement (rule 5 of Part 3), as part of the award to which the actuarial reduction is applied;

(d)where the person takes authority-initiated early retirement (rule 6 of Part 3), as part of the person’s pensionable service;

(e)where, on commencing a second period of employment with the same authority, the person becomes entitled to two pensions (rule 7 of Part 3)—

(i)to the extent that it is attributable to the first period of employment, as part of the service on which the first pension is calculated; and

(ii)to the extent that it is attributable to the second period of employment, as part of the service on which the second pension is calculated.

(5) The period of additional service calculated in accordance with paragraph (3) is not to be treated as part of the pensionable service on the basis of which—

(a)the amount of any higher tier ill-health pension is calculated under rule 2 of Part 3, or

(b)the notional ill-health pension calculated where a survivor’s pension is awarded on a firefighter member’s death in service is calculated (rule 2(1) of Part 4).

(6) Additional service purchased by the payment of periodical contributions accrues annually in accordance with the contributions paid.

Discontinuance and resumption of periodical contributions

8.—(1) An authority may—

(a)at the request of a firefighter member who has elected to purchase additional service by the payment of periodical contributions; and

(b)solely on the grounds of the firefighter member’s financial circumstances,

agree to discontinue the making of deductions from the firefighter member’s pay by way of such contributions.

(2) Where the firefighter member and the authority agree that deductions should be discontinued for a period not exceeding six months (“the discontinuance period”), the authority must resume the making of deductions as soon as reasonably practicable after the end of that period or, at the request of the firefighter member, at such time before the end of that period as may be agreed.

(3) Where the firefighter member and the authority agree that deductions should be discontinued for a period of six months or more, the member’s election under rule 6 must be treated as cancelled with effect from the date of the agreement.

(4) The period of additional service purchased up to the date on which the last contribution was deducted is to be treated as if it were the period ascertained in accordance with the formula:

where—

  • A is the number of 60ths of additional service which the firefighter member elected to purchase,

  • B is the period in respect of which contributions have been made, and

  • C is the period in respect of which contributions would have been made in accordance with the election (disregarding for this purpose any deemed cancellation under paragraph (3)).

(5) Subject to paragraph (6), where—

(a)deductions were discontinued under paragraph (2), and

(b)the firefighter member wishes to purchase additional service referable to the discontinuance period,

a deduction of an amount equal to the aggregate of the contributions that would otherwise have been made in respect of that period must be made on the same occasion as the first resumed deduction is made.

(6) Where the firefighter member’s rate of pay at the end of the discontinuance period is less than at the beginning of that period, deductions in respect of the discontinuance period must be made at the rate that would have applied if deductions had been made from the firefighter member’s salary during that period.

Periodical contributions in respect of periods of unpaid service or unpaid absence

9.—(1) A firefighter member who—

(a)has elected to purchase additional service in respect of a period of unpaid service or unpaid leave which falls within the period in respect of which contributions are payable in accordance with rule 7(1), and

(b)complies with the requirements of paragraph (2),

is entitled to require the authority to treat that period of unpaid service or unpaid leave as a period of pensionable service.

(2) The requirements of this paragraph are that the firefighter member must, not later than one month after the end of the period of unpaid service or leave (as the case may be), require the authority to deduct from the firefighter member’s pay an amount equal to the aggregate of the contributions that would have been made in respect of that period if it had been a period of paid service.

(3) In paragraphs (1) and (2) “unpaid leave” (“seibiant di-dâl”) means adoption leave, additional adoption leave, additional maternity leave or ordinary maternity leave or other absence without pay (including absence while participating in a strike).

(4) Contributions payable under paragraph (2) may be paid—

(a)during the unpaid leave period; or

(b)within six months of returning to duty after the end of that period; or

(c)within such longer period as the authority may allow.

Effect of purchasing additional service by lump sum payment

10.—(1) Subject to paragraph (2), where a period of additional service has been purchased by way of a lump sum payment, the firefighter member’s pensionable service is increased by that period as regards any award payable to the firefighter member under this Scheme.

(2) A period of additional service purchased by way of a lump sum payment is not treated as part of the pensionable service on which the amount of any higher tier ill-health pension is calculated under rule 2 of Part 3.

(3) If the firefighter member takes member-initiated early retirement the period of additional service is part of the total to which the actuarial reduction is applied under rule 5 of Part 3.

(4) If the firefighter member takes authority-initiated early retirement the period of additional service is part of the pensionable service on which the pension is calculated under rule 6 of Part 3.

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