In 2015, new laws introduced a new pension scheme for Police Officers – the Police Pension Scheme 2015 (PPS 2015). These laws included protections for those closest to retirement. It enabled them to stay in their legacy scheme for all, or part of the remedy period (between April 2015 and March 2022). This policy was referred to as “transitional protection”.
Following a legal challenge known as Sargeant, the courts determined that the protections given to members were age discriminatory.
On 15 July 2019, the government made a written statement [HCWS1725] accepting the court’s decision. They confirmed that they would engage with the Employment Tribunal to agree how to fix the discrimination. The written statement confirmed that this fix, or remedy, would apply across all public sector schemes.
On 4 February 2021, the consultation response document was published. It confirmed the affected members will receive a “deferred choice” of which pension scheme benefits they would prefer to take during the remedy period, and that they would exercise this choice at the point at which they retire.
In order to enact this remedy the Government is progressing legislation. The police pension scheme will be required to implement scheme level changes as required by this legislation. This implementation will include:-
- Moving all members to the 2015 PPS with effect from 1st April 2022 – this will mean that members will continue to accrue benefits under the 2015 scheme with effect from this date;
- Placing all eligible members back onto their legacy scheme for the remedy period (i.e. 1st April 2015 – 31st March 2022) – in order to achieve this changes to pension regulations, systems and processes are required and therefore the Government has set a deadline of October 2023 for the completion of this work;
To help members NPCC have been working with the Home Office and with the Government’s Actuary Department (GAD) to produce two documents:-
- ‘Police Pensions – Changes from 2022’ – this document provides the background to these changes and summarises what these will mean for individual members;
- ‘Illustrations of pensions and lump-sums’ – this document provides 7 differing illustrations (all of which have been made for PC rank) based on both age and length of service, and outline the potential scenarios for these when considering future pension and lump-sum benefits.
The Home Office have also produced a document on the benefits of the PPS 2015 for scheme members.
Avon & Somerset Constabulary will be keeping their police officers up to date via their pocketbook area of their intranet, Employment Support / Pay and Allowances / Pensions / McCloud/Sargeant Pension Remedy.
As regulatory changes occur Peninsula Pensions will be contacting scheme members regarding changes to their pension. Our preferred approach would be to do this via our Member Self Service portal.
If you are not already signed up to use MSS, to do so please go to the MSS area on the Peninsula Pensions website: https://members.peninsulapensions.org.uk/ Once you have registered you will be sent an activation key which will allow you to complete the set up.