National Update

FRSA National Update

05 October 2023

Pension Tax Relief – First Options Exercise

During the negotiations with the Home Office for the second options exercise for the Retained Firefighters’ Pension Settlement, it was identified that some eligible Scheme members did not receive the appropriate level, or in some cases any tax relief on the amount of monies calculated to purchase historical pension service during the first options exercise.

To overcome this happening again during the second options exercise, safeguards have been put in place, however, we know from experience that there is no guarantee that mistakes will not be made, so would ask members to be vigilant when receiving their offer to ensure the appropriate level of tax relief has been applied. Any queries can be raised with the FRSA.

In an effort to correct any mistakes made during the first options exercise, the Home Office has agreed, that any outstanding cases where the individual did not receive tax relief on the contributions paid during the first options exercise, a complaint can be raised through the FRSA to be considered by the Home Office on a case-by-case basis.

The FRSA is therefore seeking to identify any such individuals who would fall into the above category, to contact the FRSA at their earliest convenience to have their case assessed.

Second Pensions Options Exercise

The Home Office has finally published its response to the Government consultation exercise which took place back in March 2023 and as anticipated, the options exercise commenced on 01 October 2023.

However, we understand that the calculator to be used by Fire Authorities to formulate these contributions to purchase pensionable service retrospectively, will not be available until mid-October at the earliest, so this will cause a small delay.

All eligible Scheme members must be written to by 31 January 2024 as per the legislation for this options exercise and the entire process must be concluded within 18 months (31 March 2025).

Further Resources

A wealth of resources is now available for members via our new App, which is free for all members to use. Use the App store or Play store to download the FRSA App if you have not already done so.

Tristan Ashby
Chief Executive Officer

Listen to our Podcast

Don’t forget to subscribe to our podcast, Priority Message. The most recent episodes talk about the second options exercise for eligible On-Call firefighters to access later this year.

The Podcast can be accessed for free, via Spotify, Apple and Google.

Download our App

Access the latest news, information, and services through the new FRSA App.

The App is available via the Apple App store and Google Play store and is FREE, just search FRSA and download.

Our offer to you

This information leaflet is available encapsulating the key benefits of being a member of the FRSA. The document is available via our website and we would recommend that this is shared with your colleagues on station.