The Forces Pension Society - Protecting Your Interests

I thought I'd just write a few words explaining what the Forces Pension Society is and what we do.

National newspapers, television and radio have reported the Forces Pension Society’s campaign in its fight for fairness for the Armed Forces, serving and retired; in particular for those who will be hardest hit by the Government’s changes to Armed Forces pension schemes.

The Forces Pension Society is a not-for-profit organisation and is the only independent, authoritative source of occupational pension advice. Through our Pension Helpline we deal with hundreds of queries every month; many of them complex, many from widows and those with young families. And increasingly we deal with queries about when to exit (and when not to) and what future pension entitlements may be expected.

Forces Pension Society represents the interests of all ranks in all three Services. On behalf of the whole military community we promote the Unique Nature of Military Service and adherence to the Military Covenant. Every new Member of the Forces Pension Society strengthens our collective voice (now well over 40,000 Members).

In addition to our advisory service we also offer our Members a wide range of discounted goods and services, from holidays to healthcare, currency exchange to home insurance.

Membership for you and your partner is just £30 a year and if you join us online now, we will send you this holiday voucher worth £150 (conditions apply). Just quote promo code ARS2011.

Why not have a browse round our site and then, if you are interested, join us online at The Forces Pension Society and quote the code
I've been a member since 2004; excellent organisation who really know their onions.
For OP. Would appreciate a PM when convenient. I signed up to your organisation a couple of weeks ago (via t'internet) and have yet to receive any acknowledgement or a package through the post. I leave the regulars in a few weeks on completion of service.
We had a good look at the Hutton Report on Thursday when it was released and our General Secretary was on BBC radio by 3pm giving his first impressions.

Lord Hutton is recommending that a new pension scheme be introduced by 2015 featuring career averaging and a Normal Retirement Age of 60. Career averaging means that the pension built up in any one year is a proportion of pay which increases in line with pay or prices (he has left that for Schemes to sort out) rather than the year being counted as being at your final earnings. It is a design that doesn't favour high-flyers but is not bad for those who are promoted more slowly.

FPS will be working to ensure that whatever scheme is adopted, Service personnel get the best possible scheme.
Been a member of 15+ years already, so too late for my holiday voucher I guess!! :)

Good to see you here, and I recommend membership to anyone getting towards exit date [or even already gone!].
We had a good look at the Hutton Report on Thursday when it was released and our General Secretary was on BBC radio by 3pm giving his first impressions.

Lord Hutton is recommending that a new pension scheme be introduced by 2015 featuring career averaging and a Normal Retirement Age of 60.
Is there any indication whether 'grandfather rights' will apply?
Where does MOD stand wrt employment law and changing terms of service outwith consultation? The law is quite clear but the MOD seems to ride roughshod every time - is this because we don't have a 'contract' as such and can't pursue action through ETs & the like?
MOD have to consult with the Central Advisory Committee on changes to the pension or compensation scheme, having first got their proposals past the Principal Personnel Officer for each of the Armed Forces, and the Forces Pension Society are on that Committee. I can tell you that, for AFPS 05, FPS were very involved in its design and some of the improvements in AFPS 05 (eg. dynamisation) were thanks to their pressure.
Happy days with all the info given so far but are those of us on AFPS 75 about have our pension whipped out from beneath us?
Never say never... but I think any changes will be made in the same way as the change from AFPS75 to AFPS05. And it will take time (and money) to draft the changes as well.

I too am a member but will ask this question/put my understanding of what the implications of Hutton mean to me, FPS, please put me right or wrong...
AFPS 75 aged 50 now
1. Leave in 3 (2014) years time, draw IP and then full pension if commutated at 55. This is straightforward.
2. Leave in 5 (2016) years time, draw 36 years pension at AFPS 75 rates and 1 year at AFPS 15 rates
3. Leave in 10 years time (2021), draw 36 years pension at AFPS 75 rates from my 55th birthday, draw 6 years at AFPS 15.

Final statement is the key question, will I still get my pension at 55 even though I am still serving? If so, this has tax implications depending on where you declare your personal allowance to the taxman. Or are they going to forcibly transfer all my years to the new scheme? Are they going to make me transfer my pension rights every time they offer a change to my terms and conditions of service, ie promotion (fat chance!), extension of commission etc What about gratuity? If I am no longer accruing annual increases, the MoD are gaining the interest by simply not paying out.
1. Yes

1 and 3. We need to see the new scheme rules to answer this. Hutton recommends new pension scheme to be payable whilst still with the employer, not the old. Old scheme rules will not allow payment of pensions to non-reservist members who are full-time active members of the Armed Forces, even if they have passed 55. Thus we doubt 3 will be possible.

Hutton has recommended that everybody is put on the new scheme BUT your accrued rights in your current scheme are protected. They cannot force you to transfer your AFPS/RFPS benefits to any new scheme.
Am I right in assuming that the changes in this link only apply for claimants on the post-2005 AFCS? If so why weren't the previous generation(s) included?

Ministry of Defence | Defence News | Defence Policy and Business | Improved Armed Forces Compensation Scheme comes into effect
This question is really for MOD officials or, as the appropriate service charity lead, the Royal British Legion. My educated guess would be that AFCS is a new scheme and is capable of refinement, whilst WPS benefits are well established and do not cover attributable injury or illness the origins of which date from or after 6 April 2005. Sorry I cannot give a definitive answer.
Have to say, this is the one issue that is keeping my really awake at the moment. Especially as my IPP is at the tail end of 2015...
Any news on the questions raised in this thread with regards to any recent moves on the pension front?

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