PNB agreed a career break scheme in 2000 – PNB Circular 00/16 (Advisory) and Home Office Circular 4/2001 refer. The provisions can now be found in Annex OO of Police Regulations 2003.

The scheme is available to any member who has completed the probationary period, subject to the chief constable’s agreement. Members on career breaks will under this scheme remain in the police service. They will not be paid during career breaks and the time out will not count for entitlement to pay increments and paid annual leave. The officer’s rank and pay point, and eligibility for replacement allowance will be protected.

A member living in accommodation provided by the force should discuss his/her future in the property with the chief constable before applying for a career break.

As officers remain members of the force whilst on a career break, they also remain members of the Police Pension Scheme (PPS) or the New Police Pension Scheme (NPPS) – unless they have opted out e.g. an officer who is in the PPS prior to a career break will remain so whilst on the career break and upon their return to service. NB this would not be the case if the member were to resign and rejoin.

Officers in the PPS and NPPS remain subject to the pension schemes’ death benefits and enhanced ill-health pension provisions whilst on a career break. All officers continue to be covered by the injury benefit provisions where applicable.

The time spent on a career break cannot be bought-pack for pension purposes – see Home Office Circular 33/2003.