You would become a deferred member of the scheme if you cease to be an active member of the scheme before you become entitled to the payment of your pension. Please note, you must have at least 3 months’ qualifying service or have had a transfer value paid into your pension account.
If you do leave the scheme before retirement, then your active member’s pension account would be closed and a deferred member’s account would be set up. This account would contain the value of your pension at the date of leaving.
Should you return to scheme membership within 5 years after leaving, the deferred member’s account would be closed and your active member’s account would be re-established as if you had remained in pensionable service.
If you do not return to active membership your pension will remain in the deferred member’s account until you become eligible to draw it.
Retirement from a deferred pension account
You are eligible to draw your pension when you reach the deferred pension age. This will be the same as your state pension age, or 65 if that is higher.
If you have an added pension account (LINK) your retirement pension will be the total value of your deferred pension account, your added pension, plus indexation.
Early retirement from deferred pension account
Alternatively, you can receive your deferred pension from 55. You would have to give written notice to the authority in these circumstances. However, please bear in mind that the pension would be subject to an early retirement reduction, based on factors provided by the scheme actuary.
Ill health retirement from deferred pension account
If you are incapable of undertaking regular employment and this continues at least until deferred pension age, you could request early payment of the deferred pension on ill-health grounds. The decision regarding your entitlement would be made by the fire and rescue authority after they have considered the written opinion of an Independent Qualified Medical Practitioner.
If your entitlement is awarded on ill-health grounds, your early payments would be kept under review by the authority until you reach deferred pension age.
Should the authority consider that you had become capable of undertaking regular employment, payment of the pension would cease. If the pension continues in payment, no further review would be required once deferred pension age is reached. Please note that if payment ceases on review, it would be restored at deferred pension age.