By Dave Scholey, Regional Manager South East
Last week I was invited to give a brief to the West and Wales region of the Naval Careers Service (NCS). They were having a training get together in the Joint Service Mountain Training Centre (HQ) on Anglesey. The place used to be known be called Indefatigable. The Careers Advisors attending had specifically requested an Armed Forces pensions brief and how it affected their employment under Full Time Reserve Service (FTRS) contracts. This is quite a complex subject, especially as I believe the NCS are the only FTRS personnel who can and frequently do gain promotion during their time in service. I carried out a significant amount of research to ensure that I’d be able to cover all the information they were after. They’d allocated me an hour and a half. After numerous phone calls and a visit to DNRES HQ in Portsmouth I felt prepared, even considering the proposed changes to their employment terms.
I planned an overnight stay the evening before in Betws-y-Coed, so I could go into the brief refreshed and prepared. The drive up the A5 through Wales didn’t disappoint, with its stunning scenery and memories of many family holidays in the area.
The brief itself went very well, with fifteen guys attending from careers offices across the West Midlands and Wales. It became apparent they had between them, periods of service across all the various Reserve and Regular service pension schemes with one exception, AFPS05. No surprise there as that particular scheme carries stiff penalties against people leaving regular service and moving into a career in the Reserves.
It surprised me that there is a common lack of understanding of how the remuneration package is determined for people moving from Regular to Reserve. People understand that pensions may be abated and that they are not allowed to receive more collective income than they had on their last day in Regular service, but they don’t understand how it is arrived at. In a nutshell; the old Regular salary is the ceiling. Then the CA salary is added to any AFPS15 EDP income. The difference is what is allowed in pension payments. If the pension exceeds that remaining amount, it is abated until the end of the FTRS contract. If the person happened to take Resettlement Commutation from AFPS75 when they left the Regulars, that amount is then recovered from the abated pension over the period until they are 55, in line with normal procedures. A colleague, Marty Small, wrote a blog on going into FTRS service, which can be found at: . Re-Employment Into FTRS.
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