FAQ’s

How much annual leave am I entitled to?

Length of service 2004 2005 2006
Less than 2 years relevant service 22 22 22
2 or more years relevant service 22 23 25
5 or more years relevant service 24 25 25
10 or more years relevant service 27 27 27
15 or more years relevant service 28 28 28
20 or more years relevant service 30 30 30

Can I be forced to take ‘time-off’ from my card?

The simple answer is NO. Police Regulations state that the choice of compensation claimed for working overtime rests with the officer. If compensation is claimed by way of ‘time-off in lieu’ and this time is not granted within three months then this should automatically be paid into your salary. In other words, if you are being told to take the time off, and you do not wish to take it then ask for the time on your card to be paid instead !!

I am an Inspector and do not have a duty roster published. Is this right ?

Yes. Police Regulations do not require rosters to be published for Inspectors or Chief Inspectors (unless they are part time) but Home Office Circular 21/97 states that inspectors and chief inspectors, no less than other members,need to be able to plan for work, personal and family commitments. Therefore, it is important that you should be given reasonable notice of when you will be required to be on duty.

I want to work part-time. Can I choose the hours I work ?

Not necessarily. If you want to become a part-time worker then you must approach your strand through your line managers and request part-time hours. Negotiation should then take place involving you and your line manager as well as possible HR etc, as to what hours would be suitable for you and the Force.

My child’s school was unexpectedly closed for the day & he was sent home, I couldn’t arrange childcare, do I have to use annual leave or time out of the book to care for them?

A police officer may take time off because of the unexpected disruption or termination of arrangements for the care of a dependant, or

To deal with an incident which involves a child of the member and which occurs unexpectedly in a period during which an educational establishment, which the child attends, is responsible for him/her.

Leave taken as time off for dependants shall be treated as duty, but does not apply unless the member tells his/her chief officer the reason for his/her absence as soon as reasonably practicable. Best practice would be to inform a line supervisor of your circumstances ASAP after you become aware of it.

A “dependant” means, in relation to a member of a police force:

  1. a spouse,
  2. a child,
  3. a parent,
  4. a person who lives in the same household as the member, otherwise than by reason of being his employee, tenant, lodger or boarder.

This also covers when a dependant falls ill, gives birth or is injured or assaulted or in consequence of the death of a dependant.

My rest day was cancelled for an operational reason, I am now no longer required to work on that day as they have scaled the operation down, what am I entitled to?

When an officers rest day is cancelled in anticipation of an operational need for which in any event he/she is not required to attend for duty:

Where the officer is given less than 5 days notice he/she can choose between taking the rest day with no compensation or working on the rest day with compensation in accordance with Police Regulations. Where the officer is given less than 5 days notice he/she can choose between taking the rest day with no compensation or working on the rest day with compensation in accordance with Police Regulations.

I am being asked to change my duties at short notice, can they do that?

The Chief Officer shall cause to be published duty rosters for members of his/her force after full consultation with the Joint Branch Board at intervals not exceeding 12 months and not later than 1 month before the date in which it starts. Each roster will set out for at least 3 months the following:

  • His/her rest days.
  • Public Holidays in which he/she may be required to do duty on.
  • The time at which his/her scheduled daily period of duty begins & end.
  • For part time members his/her free days.
  • Intervals of at least 11 hours between the end and the beginning of the next shift.
  • An interval between rostered rest days not exceeding 7 days.

Where alterations are made to an annual duty roster after its publication these changes must arise from the exigencies of duty (unless they are made at the officer’s own request or have otherwise been agreed with the joint branch board). The term exigencies of duty, should be interpreted as relating to situations where a pressing demand, need or requirement is perceived that is not reasonably avoidable and necessitates a change of roster. In this context the word, pressing, relates to the expected situation at the time when the duty is to be performed rather than the time when the duty roster is changed, i.e. the reasons for a change may be known many months in advance but still be pressing.

Changes to rosters should only be made after full consideration of welfare, operational and practical circumstances rather than purely on financial grounds. Because rosters are produced annually a number of unforeseen reasons for changes may subsequently arise. It is clearly not possible to produce an exhaustive list of all of the potential reasons, which may necessitate changes. However, by way of example, unforeseen public order situations, court attendance and essential training would justify changes to rostered duties. An officer should be told as soon as the requirement for the change is known and at the latest, by midnight on the calendar day before the changed period of duty commences.

I have had to return from Annual Leave to attend court, what can I claim?

You will be entitled to the following:

  • Recalled for 1 day or 2 days an additional 2 days annual leave for each day recalled or 1 days annual leave & 1 days pay at double time, for each day.
  • Recalled for 3 days or more As above for the first two days then 1 ½ days annual leave or 1-day annual leave & half days pay at double time in lieu of each such day recalled thereafter.

Regulation 33 covers the above. Annex 0, Paragraph 5(a) of Police Regulations and Determinations 2003, which goes on to say under Paragraph 5(b);

This paragraph applies to a period of absence from duty of 3 or more days, where at least one of the days is a day of annual leave and the other days, if not days of annual leave, are rostered rest days, days taken in lieu of overtime, public holidays (or days taken off in lieu thereof) or monthly leave days, or any combination thereof.

Under PNB Circular No.03/15 – The above compensation also applies to officers actually recalled from annual leave, but also to annual leave that has been pre-booked/scheduled.

What about my entitlement to a meal break?

In Police Regulations the normal daily period of duty (including refreshments) is 8 hours. As far as the exigencies of duty permit the normal daily period of duty shall be performed in one tour, with an interval of 45 minutes for refreshments, except when a half-day’s annual leave is taken.

Police Regulations also provide for variable shift arrangements, such as the one we work in Warwickshire. Where an officer works in accordance with variable shift arrangement is on duty for a continuous period of 5 hours or more, time for refreshments shall as far as exigencies of duty permit be allowed as follows:

Number of Hours Refreshment Time
Less than 6 30 minutes
6 ~ 7 hours 35 minutes
7 ~ 8 hours 40 minutes
8 ~ 9 hours 45 minutes
9 ~ 10 hours 50 minutes
10 hours or more 60 minutes

A “day” means a period of 24 hours starting at 7am as determined some years ago by the Chief Constable.

How do I retire?

It may seem a strange question but it is one which we are asked regularly, hopefully the below information should assist.

Once you have decided it is time to retire, you need to know what you are still entitled to.

Firstly your commutation, which means giving up part of your pension which is taxable for a tax free lump sum. Of course some members do not take this and prefer to go for a larger annual pension, you must decide this yourself, and everyone’s situation is unique so there are no right or wrong answers. But whatever you decide the commutation is only tax free if applied for prior to retirement.   Also to note is is tax free up to 21%, if you take the higher figure up to 25%, the extra is taxed at the appropriate rate.

Retiring is done through the tab on People Solutions which takes you through the process of notice etc.

This must be done at least 1 month prior to retirement, (3 months if ACPO rank)

Whilst serving you can pay into the following schemes,

  • The Convalescent Home
  •  Welfare
  •  The Police Federation

And from the member services run from our offices

  • The Group Insurance Scheme
  •  The Private Medical Scheme

Once retired you need no longer contribute to the first 3 you can however still access them (provided you were a contributing member) through the same procedures you did whilst serving.

You will no longer need, or receive, funding from the Police Federation so those contributions cease. We are however willing to assist retired members when and where possible.

The last 2 you can remain in if you so wish but you need to notify this office at the time you submit your resignation so we can deal with the necessary paperwork.

After all that have a long and happy retirement

How many days can I work in one go?

Regulation 22, Annex E, Police Regulations and Determinations 2003 makes it quite clear that there is to be an interval between each of an officer’s rostered rest days not exceeding 7 days, unless in the case of a part-time member, a longer interval has been agreed between the member and the chief officer.

Is it true that full time officials of the Joint Branch Board receive Chief Inspector’s Pay?

No, the Joint Branch Board officials receive the normal pay for their rank together with a long standing agreement they do not claim overtime.

How does sick leave affect my pay?

The Secretary of State’s determination of sick pay under regulation 28 of the Police regulations 2003 provides that a member of a police force who is absent on sick leave shall be entitled to full pay for six months in any one year period. Thereafter, the member becomes entitled to half pay for six months in any one year period.

The Chief Constable retains the discretion, however, to extend the period of entitlement to, as appropriate, full pay or half pay.

I am a student officer and they are talking about extending my probation, what should I do?

Consult your Area representative without delay. Regulations 12 Police Regulations 2003 says that A member of a police force appointed in the rank of constable shall be on probation for the first 2 years of his service as a constable in that police force following his last appointment thereto or for such longer period as the chief officer determines in the circumstances of a particular case.

I am a student officer and have been told a case conference is to be held to look at whether to terminate my probation and career in the police. What should I do?

Consult your Area representative without delay. Regulation 13 Police Regulations 2003 says that if during the period of probation in the force the services of a constable may be dispensed with at any time if the chief officer considers that he is not fitted, physically or mentally, to perform the duties of his office, or that he is not likely to become an efficient or well conducted constable. (This decision can only be made by the Chief Constable).A constable whose services are dispensed with under this regulation is entitled to receive a month’s notice or a month’s pay in lieu thereof.

I have been asked to perform as an Acting Sergeant/Inspector but have been told there is a qualifying period. Also, am I entitled to overtime? If so, at what rate?

Each financial year, you are required to work for10 complete days cumulative (in the case of a part-time officer 80 complete hours and an officer with variable shift arrangements qualifying shifts amounting in total to 80 hours) in a 12 month period before you can receive a temporary salary. A period of 12 months begins on 1 April.

Acting Sergeants and Inspectors are entitled to Temporary Duty Allowance. Any overtime incurred whilst acting will be paid at your substantive rank – i.e. 1) an Acting Sergeant’s overtime will be paid at Constable’s rates and 2) an Acting Inspector’s overtime will be paid at Sergeant’s rates but only during the first 10 working days and on any Rest Days or Bank Holidays during the entire period of Acting. No overtime is payable on a normal working day once the first 10 working days of Acting have been completed.

If you are an officer who has been promoted to a temporary rank, there is no requirement to work a qualifying period and you will in fact progress through the pay scales of your temporary rank until you revert back to your substantive rank. If you are promoted again to a temporary rank, you will automatically start at the same pay point of that rank where you left off.

Telephone calls received whilst at home on rest day or after tour of duty

Contrary to popular belief, there is no provision of entitlement to four hours’ payment (suitably enhanced) for receiving a telephone call at home though this may be arguable if the telephone call is of significant duration. If, however, a call is received and as a result of that call you are required or instructed to go somewhere, or perform duty, then the view is that this may well be a recall to duty and be eligible for the appropriate amount of compensation. Answering the telephone does not constitute a recall to duty.

Compensation for duty on a rostered rest day.

Where you are required to do duty on a rostered rest day you are entitled to:

 

  • On less than fifteen days’ notice
  • compensation at the rate of time and one half.
  • On fifteen days’ notice or more – another rest day which should be notified to you within four days of notification of the requirement.

A re-rostered rest day is subject to rest day compensation if there is a requirement to work on that day. When calculating the number of days’ notice given, disregard both the day on which the requirement was notified and the day on which you are being required to do duty.

Click here for PDF of what to do if a rest day is cancelled    Cancelled rest days

What can you tell me about the entitlement to overtime?

Overtime is potentially payable when:

  • You remain on duty after your tour of duty ends,
  • When you are recalled between two tours of duty, or
  • You are required to begin earlier than the rostered time without due notice and on a day when you have already completed your normal daily period of duty.

Planned overtime

Where you are informed at or before the commencement of your tour that you will be required to remain on duty after the tour ends no account is to be taken of any period of less than 30 minutes of overtime worked on any occasion other than a period of 15 minutes.

Casual overtime

Where you are not informed at the commencement of your tour of duty that you will be required to remain on duty after the tour of duty ends then, on the first four occasions, in any week, the first 30 minutes of any overtime worked is to be disregarded in calculating the overtime allowance to which you are entitled. This now applies whether the overtime is submitted for payment or time off in lieu. This topic has been regularly reviewed by the Federation nationally and it’s lawyers. It is not a breach of our Human rights under European or UK law, nor is it considered to be slavery.

Recall to duty

What is a Recall to Duty

A recall to duty occurs when an officer has finished their tour of duty and is recalled to work prior to the start of the next tour of duty.

For being recalled to duty there is a minimum of 4 hours payment. In order to obtain the 4 hours the officer must be called out and return home again before the start of the next tour of duty. In other words it is like an island of time in between two tours of duty.

If you do not go home again having been called out but continue working then this can mean one of two things.

If you are required to return to duty with less than 8 hours notice on a day on which you have already completed a tour of duty, then you are on overtime from the time you come on duty until the start of your rostered tour of duty. That time also counts towards the time of your current duty as well.

If however, you are given sufficient notice to come back to work on a day you have already worked then that is merely an advancement of the start of the force day and no overtime is accrued.

Example: Officer works 9-5 on Monday and is rostered to work 9-5 on Tuesday. If they are called out at 0300 on Tuesday morning and continue working until 1400 hours they are required without sufficient notice to work on a day when they have already completed 8 hours and therefore are on overtime from 03.00 until the start of their rostered duty 09.00 and it counts towards their current day so they are also on overtime from 1100 hours to 1400 hours. Total = 9 hours overtime

If they are warned at 1700 hours to be on duty at 0300 hours then that is sufficient time and the 0300 start is only a moving forward of the force day so they start at 0300 hours and only go onto overtime at 1100 hours. Total = 3 hours overtime

 

Travel Time

Travel Time between home and your usual place of duty is generally not duty time for the purposes of Police Regulations, but it is for the purposes of Police Pension Regulations.

The general premise of traveling time was removed from Police regulations in 2002 and now only remains in very limited circumstances.

The current circumstances where traveling time as duty time is recognised under Police regulations are as follows.

Where an individual;

  • Is required to perform his normal duty in more than one tour of duty (Split shift)
  • Is recalled between to duty two tours of duty

However should you be required to attend another location for duty and in order to do so you genuinely need to attend your normal station first, then you should book on once you arrive and at home station and travel in duty time.

If you are required to work from another station other than your base station you are still entitled to travelling time as agreed by the CC. At this time this is set at 30 minutes each way.

What is a lawful order?

You can be required to carry out all lawful orders and must at all times punctually and promptly perform all the appointed duties and attend to all matters within the scope of your office as a Constable.

An order is generally lawful provided that it is for police purposes and would not render you liable to any criminal, civil or disciplinary action. In case of doubt, contact your Area Federation representative.

You can be required to perform overtime by an officer of a higher rank.

Work, which you may not be required to perform. It would generally be unlawful to require you to undertake:

  1. the regular cleaning or any part of the cleaning of a particular Police Station, and
  2. any other work not connected with police duty.

Half Pay Calculations – from date of reporting sick – and the officer has Group Insurance.

  • 0-199 days = Statutory Sick Pay of £79 pw or approx £339 pcm
  • As most officers go on half pay after 181 days they will get 18 days SSP
  • After 199 the officer goes on Employment Support Allowance ESA of £11.30 a day or roughly £339pcm for the rest of that year at least. This will be more if they have children and if their partner does not work.
  • Group Insurance – £100 per week when on half pay or roughly £428pcm

Calculations :

  • Officer with net pay of 1600 per month. £800 half pay + £339 ESA + £428 Group Insurance (if in it) = £1567 or 98% of net pay.
  • Officer with net pay of £2100 per month. £1050 half pay + £339 + £428 = £1817 or 86% of net pay
  • Officer with net pay of £2800 per month. £1400 half pay + £339 + £428 = £2167 or 77% of net pay.

The above figures could increase if the officer’s partner does not work and / or the officer has children.