1 Making extra contributions
You can increase the amount you receive when you retire by paying extra into the Retained Firefighters' Modified Pension Scheme 2006 (RFMPS 2006) over your standard contributions, providing you start any extra payments at least two years before your normal pension age of 60?
Paying more into the Firefighters' Pension Scheme means you benefit from tax relief on any extra contributions you choose to pay.
If you are interested in these options, contact the Pensions Team.
If you are already making extra payments to the scheme (which started before 1 April 2015), to increase your membership you may also pay additional contributions into the Firefighters' Pension Scheme 2015 to purchase additional pension when you transition into that scheme.
2 Buying additional service
If you are unable to build 30 years' pensionable service before you reach the age of 55, you can purchase additional service by paying additional monthly contributions.
You would need to elect to do this at least two years before you reach the age of 55. The additional contributions would start to be deducted from your first birthday following your election and, like your basic pension contributions, will be assessed on your pensionable pay.
If you leave or stop paying your additional contributions before the amount due to purchase your additional service is paid, you will be credited with the appropriate portion of service purchased.
There are limits on the amounts you can save over a year and over your lifetime. If you exceed the limits, you may be liable for an additional tax charge.
If you would like an estimate of the cost buying additional service, please contact the Pensions Team.
3 Paying contributions to a stakeholder or personal pension scheme
You also have the option to pay contributions into a pension scheme of your own choosing as well as being a member of the Retained Firefighters' Modified Pension Scheme 2006 (RFMPS 2006).
You can, if you wish, pay up to 100% of your taxable earnings in each tax year (or £3,600 if greater) into any number of concurrent pension arrangements of your choice and be eligible for tax relief on those contributions.
4 Limits on the pensions savings you can make
Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) limits the amount you pay into a pension scheme each year (the Annual Allowance) and the amount you can build up over your lifetime (the Lifetime Allowance) and receive tax relief. If you exceed either of these limits you will have to pay an additional tax charge.
Further information about the Lifetime and Annual Allowances can be found on GOV.UK.