By Marty Small – Regional Manager South West & Scotland WEA
AFPS 15 pays a pension immediately to those who serve until age 60 and defers it until the member’s state pension age (SPA) for those who leave before that age.
I’m eligible for AFPS 15, how do I know if I’m in the Scheme?
If you joined the Regular Armed Forces or Reserve Forces on or after 1st April 2015, you will have been automatically enrolled in AFPS 15. You will, however, need to have at least 2 years of paid Service to qualify for most pension benefits. This is known as qualifying service
AFPS 05 pays a pension immediately to those who serve until age 55 and preserves it until age 65 for those who leave before that age.
I’m eligible for AFPS 05, how do I know if I’m in the Scheme?
You would not have needed to do anything to join AFPS 05 if you joined the Regular Armed Forces between 6th April 2005 and 31st March 2015. You will, however, need to have at least 2 years of continuous paid Service to qualify for most pension benefits. This is known as qualifying service. It is worth checking your Annual Benefits Information Statement, which you should receive shortly after your birthday, or JPA Record to confirm which Scheme you are in.
Both schemes allow the member to claim the pension at a reduced rate (this is called actuarial reduction) at any age from 55 onwards.
The AFPS 15 Early Departure Payment (EDP) scheme pays an EDP lump sum worth 2.25 times of the member’s AFPS 15 deferred pension, and an EDP income worth at least 34% of the member’s AFPS 15 deferred pension to those who serve until at least age 40 and give at least 20 years’ service. The income rises by Consumer Price Increases (CPI) at age 55 and ceases at the member’s SPA.
AFPS 05 pays an EDP lump sum worth 3 times the member’s AFPS 05 preserved pension and an EDP income worth at least 50% of the member’s AFPS 05 preserved pension to those who serve until at least age 40 and give at least 18 years’ service. At age 55 the EDP income rises to 75% of the value of the preserved AFPS 05 pension and increases by CPI. It continues until the member is 65.
McCloud Employment Tribunal
Transitional protection allowed older members of the Armed Forces (age 45 and over on 1 April 2012) to stay in legacy pension schemes and not move to the new CARE pension scheme AFPS 15. Those under the age of 45 were transferred to AFPS 15.
Contested that transitional protection gave rise to unlawful discrimination on the grounds of age.
The solution is known as ‘The Remedy’
Eligible personnel are those who were in service on or before 31 March 2012 and on or after 1 April 2015. Those who joined up on or after 1 April 2012 are not eligible.
Service between 1 April 2015 and 31 March 2022 is known as the ‘Remedy Period’, option to receive up to another 7 years in legacy pension scheme. All service from 1 April 2022 will be on AFPS15 for all!
All the information above can be found on the GOV UK website,
Armed Forces Pension Scheme 2005 (publishing.service.gov.uk)
Armed Forces Pension Scheme 2015: your pension scheme explained (publishing.service.gov.uk)
McCloud update and additional guidance (publishing.service.gov.uk)