Fire Authority Guidance Notes
Interactive Forms User Guide
Interactive Forms
User Guide
Pensionable Pay Guidance Notes
Pensionable Pay
Guidance Notes
Death in Service Completion Notes
Death in Service
Completion Notes
Kier Secure File Transfer Portal
Using the Secure
File Transfer Portal

Fire Authority Interactive Forms
Starter Form
Starter
Form
Variation Form
Variation
Form
Estimate Request Forms
Estimate Request
Form
Leaver Form
Leaver
Form
Death in Service Form
Death in Service Form
Pensionable Pay Form
Pensionable Pay Form

Pensionable Pay Calculator
Excel 2007+
Excel 2007+
Updated June 2018

Fire Authority Employer Guides

• Internal Disputes Resolution Procedure Link
• Leave of Absence Completion Notes Link

2020 Year End Process
March 2020 • Year End Return Guide - March 2020 Link
March 2020 • Fire Scheme Year End Return Template Link
March 2020 • Fire Financial Year End Return Template Link


FPS 2006 Employee Forms

Cohabiting partners joint declaration form

Previous pensions & employment history

Death Benefit Nomination form

FPS 2015 Employee Forms

Cohabiting partners joint declaration form

Previous pensions & employment history

Death Benefit Nomination form

Fire Authority Latest News

Important Notice - due to COVID-19 - 1st May 2020

The vast majority of XPS is now working from home.

Due to working from home can we please ask that, where possible, correspondence is via email. Due to Covid-19 we are only accessing our office a few days per week to deal with post.

Due to emails being dealt with on a daily basis we would like to suggest that you use this medium to contact the office. If you are unable to use email we are still accepting and dealing with post but not on a daily basis.

NEW LOOK WEBSITE! - 1st May 2020

As part of a wider development of the Member Self Service website, it has undergone an upgrade to the 'look and feel' of the site. If you already have an account, your username and password will remain unchanged and you will be able to login as normal using the LOGIN button. However, if you encounter any problems please email mss@xpsgroup.com or telephone 01642 030695.

There are more changes planned to the site to bring additional functionality and we will add updates to the site as and when these further developments are complete.

The website can be accessed at: https://www.myownpension.org.uk

If you have not registered and wish to do so, please click here and follow the registration guide to signup.

Firefighters Pension Scheme Contribution Rates 2020-21 - 24th March 2020

For 2020-21, the current rates shall continue to apply due to the pause of the cost-cap mechanism.

The factsheet reminds you of the contribution rates as at 1st April 2019

As the rate of member and employer contributions remain the same there are no additional actions required by you as the scheme employer

2020 Year-end guide and templates now available - 12th March 2020

The guidance notes (link), Scheme template (link) and Financial template (link) can be downloaded from the employer guides section .

You will notice that there are some minor changes to the template from last year, this is to incorporate more extensive checks of data validity and allowing us to achieve a higher success rate for posting the details to records.

Scheme year-end return (31/03/2020) - Deadline for submission is Friday 1st May 2020

Financial year-end return (05/04/2020) - Deadline for submission is Friday 29th May 2020

As a minimum the financial year-end return must include all officers at the rank of Inspector and above.

The completed returns should be returned FAO System Support on the Secure File Transfer Portal (SFTP) - should you require access to this facility please email your request to pensystems@xpsgroup.com

Annual Benefit Statements - Active members updated 25th October 2019

From August 2019, contributing members of the 1992, 2006 and 2015 Firefighters' Pension Schemes will receive their 2019 Annual Benefit Statement.

Unlike previous years, firefighters will receive a version tailored to the particular pension scheme(s), and protection status, they are a member of.

Once again, FPS 1992 scheme members who are, or will be, affected by FPS 2015 will have a second projection.

Detailed scheme-specific Annual Benefit Statement notes can be found in the 'ABS' tab. In the case of FPS 1992 and FPS 2006 members, the notes are housed as two documents: one set for fully protected members and a second set for those who have (or will at some point) move into FPS 2015.

Please note, Annual Benefit Statements are estimates based on the information held within your pension record, please do have a look at your full pension record to endure the information contained within this is correct. Where there are inaccuracies, please do contact us and we will work with your employer to correct anything.

FPS 2015 Transitional Protections Challenge Update - updated 16th July 2019

The outcome of the Governments application for permission to appeal to the Supreme Court was expected in July. The decision has been made earlier than expected and on 27th June 2019 the Supreme Court has denied the Governments request for an appeal in the transitional protections case in respect of age discrimination and pension protection.

Until the remedy has been determined by the employment tribunal and any regulations changed as a result, we cannot speculate how future benefits may change.

We will update you with further news on each stage of the challenge as and when it becomes available.

Cohabiting Partners - FPS2006 & FPS2015 - updated 26th February 2019
You may have heard of the 'Brewster' case, this case found that it was unlawful for a co-habiting partner to have to be nominated to get a survivors partners pension which means scheme members no longer have to fill in a form to nominate a partner.

The 2006 and 2015 regulations are now amended to remove the requirement for a nomination form to be completed where other underlying conditions already exist and are met. The conditions for payment of an adult survivors' pension can be found on the death benefits section of the 2006 & 2015 scheme page. The amendments are retrospective; FPS2006 from 6 April 2006 and FPS2015 from 1 April 2015.

Whilst you are NOT compelled to nominate your partner completion of this form would help clarify your personal circumstances following your death.

Government announces a pause in the cost cap rectification process - updated 21st February 2019
Please read our bulletin for further information.

2019 Year-end guide and templates now available - updated 15th February 2019
The guidance notes (link), Scheme template (link) and Financial template (link) can be downloaded from the employer guides section .

You will notice that there are some minor changes to the template from last year, this is to incorporate more extensive checks of data validity and allowing us to achieve a higher success rate for posting the details to records.

Scheme year-end return (31/03/2019) - Deadline for submission is Friday 3rd May 2019
Financial year-end return (05/04/2019) - Deadline for submission is Friday 31st May 2019

As a minimum the financial year-end return must include all officers in the role of Area Manager A and above.

The completed returns should be returned FAO System Support on the Secure File Transfer Portal (SFTP) - should you require access to this facility please email your request to pensystems@xpsgroup.com

Changes to Pensions - updated 21/12/2018
The court of appeal has ruled that the Government's changes to pensions with regard to judges and firefighters were discriminatory on the grounds of age. These cases were brought due to changes to public sector pensions in 2015, which also affected other public sector schemes including the police pension scheme.

The Government will now need to consider the full judgement. We are therefore unable to provide you with any information on might happen next. We understand that any communication from the Home Office is unlikely until the New Year.

The full judgement and a summary is available at https://www.judiciary.uk/judgments/lord-chancellor-v-mccloud-and-others-judgment/

2017/18 Annual Benefit Statements - updated 20th August 2018
• Deferred annual benefit statements issued 13th July 2018.
• Active member statements to be issued between 22nd and 29th August 2018.  For more details on this year’s statements, visit the ‘ABS’ tab.

HMRC Pensions Online Service - updated 4th May 2018
Please read our latest Bulletin relating to changes to the HMRC Pensions Online Service.
Clients who manage their own schemes please click here...
For clients who have elected to have XPS Administration do this service please click here...
You can access HMRC pensions newsletters via this website.

2018 Year-end guide issued to Fire & Rescue Authorites - updated 6th February 2018
The guidance notes (link), Scheme template (link updated 12th March 2018) and Financial template (link updated 12th March 2018) can be downloaded from the employer guides section .
You will notice that there are some changes to the template from last year, this is to incorporate more extensive checks of data validity and allowing us to achieve a higher success rate for posting the details to records.

Scheme year-end return (31/03/2018) - Deadline for submission was Friday 11th May 2018
Financial year-end return (05/04/2018) - Deadline for submission was Friday 8th June 2018

As a minimum the financial year-end return must include all members at the role of Area Manager(A) and above.

The completed returns should be returned FAO System Support on the Secure File Transfer Portal (SFTP) - should you require access to this facility please email your request to pensystems@xpsgroup.com

Annual Benefit Statements

Deferred benefit statements were issued to former contributing members of the Fire Pension Schemes on 13th July 2019. 

Statements for active members will be issued from August 2020.

The following notes accompany your statement; merely select the document that matches your scheme and protection status. You should refer to these notes whilst reading your statement.

For Members of FPS 1992, FPS 2006 (standard section) & FPS 2015

• FPS 1992 Fully Protected Member

• FPS 1992 Tapered or Unprotected Member

• FPS 2006 (standard section) Fully Protected Member

• FPS 2006 (standard section) Tapered or Unprotected Member

• FPS 2015 Only Members

For Members of FPS 2006 (Modified Retained section)

• Fully Protected Member

• Tapered or Unprotected Member



Fire Authority Bulletins

Date Issued Title Key Points Download
10/09/2020 Briefing Note - FPS/2020-008 • FPS/2020-008- Update on FPS/2020-008 Link
04/08/2020 Briefing Note - FPS/2020-007 • FPS/2020-007- Update on FPS/2020-007 Link
03/07/2020 Briefing Note - FPS/2020-006 • FPS/2020-006 - Update on FPS/2020-006 Link
02/06/2020 Briefing Note - FPS/2020-005 • FPS/2020-005 - Update on FPS/2020-005 Link
07/05/2020 Briefing Note - FPS/2020-004 • FPS/2020-004 - Update on FPS/2020-004 Link
29/04/2020 Briefing Note - COVID-19 FPS/2020-003 • FPS/2020-003 - COVID-19 Webpage Link
29/04/2020 Briefing Note FPS/2020-002 • FPS/2020-002 - Update on Transitional Protections Remedy (Sargeant) Link
09/04/2020 Budget Changes Briefing Note • FPS2020-001 - Budget Changes Briefing Note Link
19/06/2019 Survivor Benefits - Amendment Order FPS1992 • SI 2019/378 - amendment to civil partnership and same sex marriage
survivor benefits
Link
06/03/2019 Employer Contribution Rate Changes • HM Treasury advised that the employer rate that Fire and Rescue Authorities
  pay towards firefighter pensions should be increased as of 1 April 2019
Link
25/02/2019 Survivor Benefits in
FPS2006 & FPS2015
• Amendment to the survivor benefits following judicial review (Brewster) Link
21/02/2019 Cost Cap
Process change
• Government announces a pause in the cost cap rectification process Link
30/10/2017 FPS 2017 amendment Orders • SI 2017/892 - changes to survivors benefits
• Contribution Holiday
Link
08/08/2017 Cohabitating partners • Reaction to Brewster case Link
31/07/2017 Voluntary Scheme Pays • Background to scheme pays and request for decision from authority   regarding the use of Voluntary scheme pays Link
06/03/2017 2015 Tribunal Case • Decision of Tribunal Case Link

Other Useful Links

Further information can be found by clicking on the links below:

• Fire Scheme Advisory Board (SAB)

Link

• FPS Regulations & Guidance

Link

• Legislation information

Link

• Factors & Actuarial infomation

Link

• HMRC Pension information

Link

• Taxation Information

Link

• Fire Brigades Union

Link

Vancouver House is currently CLOSED to members of the public.

Telephone : (01642) 030692

or by email to : penmail@xpsgroup.com

To get directions to our office, please click on the 'pin' icon in the top left corner of the map.

You can view the office on Google Maps', by clicking on the link 'View on Google Maps'.

 

 

 

 

Contact XPS Administration
   
 

Starter Pack

When a firefighter is due to commence employment within your organisation it is important that they are provided information regarding the Firefighters Pension Scheme.

As the employer you must determine which of the schemes a firefighter joins; are they new to the fire service or are they transferring from another Fire & Rescue Authority (FRA)?

Where a firefighter transfers to you from another authority you should seek confirmation, ahead of their start date with you, which of the schemes the firefighter is a member (or eligible to be a member of) and their protection status i.e. protected, unprotected, or tapered (including their taper date).

From the date a new firefighter joins the scheme, depending on which scheme they are a member of, he or she may only have twelve months within which to transfer other pension benefits accrued prior to joining the fire service. It is, therefore, very important that they are provided with information as soon as possible. The ideal time to supply the information to the firefighter is before their employment actually commences and preferably with their written statement of particulars.

Starter Pack Includes the following
Short scheme guide (FPS 2015 Only)
Explains the core benefits of the FPS 2015 and provides contact information for Kier Pensions Unit.
Link
Previous employment history (All Schemes)
Allows the employee to inform Kier Pensions Unit of previous Fire service or other pension schemes which they may wish to consider transferring into the Firefighters Pension Scheme.
Link
Lump sum death grant nomination form (FPS 2006 & FPS 2015)
This allows the employee to nominate who they wish to receive a lump sum death grant should they die in service.
Link
Cohabiting Partners - joint declaration form (FPS 2006)
This form deals with pensions for cohabiting adult partners - that is, people of the same or opposite sex who are in a long-term relationship but are neither married nor registered as civil partners
Link
Application to Join (FPS 2015)
This allows the employee to apply to join the scheme, and should be used where an employee has opted out.(Employers should automatically admit new employees to the Scheme)
Link
Cohabiting Partners - joint declaration form (FPS 2015)
This form deals with pensions for cohabiting adult partners - that is, people of the same or opposite sex who are in a long-term relationship but are neither married nor registered as civil partners.
Link

We have drafted a suite of template letters to use (below) when informing your employees about their right to firefighter pension scheme membership.

Covering Letter (All Schemes)
New officers FPS 2015 Link
Transferee officers FPS 2006 Link

Legal Challenge

As you will be aware, a successful legal challenge has been made, which found the protections afforded to some scheme members when the 2015 pension scheme come into being, were in fact discriminatory.

There is an ongoing consultation which seeks the views on how the remedy could work to remove this discrimination for scheme members who would be in scope of this legal case.

From time to time, XPS will issue its ‘In The Loop’ bulletin which is a remedy specific communication aimed at informing Scheme Managers and client contacts about the current implications, issues and actions involved with this work programme.

A history of these bulletins can be found below:

In The Loop - Issue 1

If you would like to discuss this bulletin or the emedy programme more generally, please contact tech@xpsgroup.com