Pay Scale

Pension Terms

  1. All those joining pensionable Public Service employment on or after 1 January 2013 are, in general, members of the Single Public Service Pension Scheme (‘Single Scheme’). This defined benefit Single Scheme applies to all military personnel who join the Permanent Defence Force (PDF) as first-time new entrants to the Public Service from 1 January 2013 onwards. The Single Scheme also applies to former Public Servants – including former PDF personnel – returning to pensionable employment in the Public Service after a break of more than 26 weeks, or other than under the same contract of employment. The rules of the Single Scheme are set down in the Public Service Pensions (Single Scheme and Other Provisions) Act 2012 and in related DPER circulars. Different occupational pension scheme (superannuation) arrangements apply to military personnel recruited to the PDF before 1st January 2013.
  2. The Single Scheme is based on a career-averaging model. Retirement benefits (pension and lump sum) are based on a % of pensionable earnings throughout a person’s Public Service career as a Single Scheme member. For Defence Forces personnel who are Single Scheme members, their ‘minimum pension age’ is 50.  This means that retirement pension and lump sum are normally only payable immediately on retirement or discharge from the PDF if you serve to age 50, and have the required minimum of 2 years’ qualifying service. Where leaving the PDF before age 50, benefits will be preserved and generally payable in line with, and linked to, future social welfare Contributory State Pension age (66 rising to 68).  Retirement benefits are contributory; and occupational pension is subject to integration with the Social Insurance system.
  3. New entrants to the Public Service, including those joining the PDF, are ordinarily insurable for full PRSI.  On that basis, their occupational (or spouse's) pension is integrated with the State Social Insurance system in accordance with standard Public Service arrangements.
  4. Throughout their service, all new entrants to the PDF must pay appropriate employee pension contributions from pay towards their occupational pension scheme benefits.  They are also liable to pay the existing Public Service Pension-Related Deduction (PRD). This is separate from standard employee pension contributions and no additional superannuation benefits are earned as a result of the deduction. PRD is being converted to an ‘Additional Superannuation Contribution’ from 1 January 2019.

Additional Notes:

Integration is a standard feature of Public Service occupational pension schemes. It means that a person’s entitlement to the range of Social Insurance benefits (including the State Pension Contributory) is taken into account when calculating the amount of occupational pension payable. In an integrated pension scheme, the State Pension Contributory (SPC) is regarded as part of the employee’s total pension package.  Under standard Public Service arrangements, this integration of occupational pension with the Social Insurance system begins from the time the occupational pension starts payment. This means the occupational pension is reduced from the start by a Social Insurance (State Pension) offset, regardless of whether the person has reached State Pension age.  Integration applies to occupational pension and contributions, but not to retirement lump sum.

Dated:  April 2018

Pay Terms

  1. All those joining the Public Service from 1 January 2011 have reduced pay scales, while their actual date of recruitment will determine their specific occupational pension terms.
  2. The rate of pay, including the payment of the allowances, are subject to review and adjustment on an ongoing basis in accordance with changes applicable across the Public Service generally as per Government Policy.
  3. In line with Department of Finance instructions dated 23 December 2010, starting pay on recruitment from open competitions, for all posts within the Public Service, will be at the minimum of the relevant pay scale.

Pay During Training

Army/Air Corps recruit training lasts 17 weeks See Details here >> . During this time a recruit that hasn't been employed in the public service previously will be entitled to receive €394.22 gross per week.

On successful completion of this training a recuit will qualify for promotion to Private 2*. A further 10 weeks of training then follows. The pay for the duration of training as a Private 2* is €461.61 gross per week. On succesful completion of this training a Private 2* will be promoted to Private 3*.

The first point on the pay scale for a newly qualified 3 Star Private is €478.62 gross per week. A 3 Star Private is also entitled to receive a Military Service Allowance (MSA) of €43.76 per week giving a combined total of gross pay and MSA of €522.38 gross per week which totals at €27,257 gross per annum.

In addition to basic pay a range of duties attract additional allowances.

 Post 01 January 2013 PPC Payscales LRA2

Recruitment Rank Point 01/10/18
Basic Pay
On enlistment 1 €289.04 €0.00 €289.04
After 1 years service 2 €343.87 €0.00 €343.87
After 2 years service 3 €449.95 €0.00 €449.95
After 3 years service 4 €524.90 €0.00 €524.90


Private, Grade 1/Seaman, 3rd Class €398.16 €0.00 €398.16


Private, 2 Star/Seaman, 2nd Class €466.23 €0.00 €466.23


Private, 3 Star/Seaman, 1st Class
1 €483.41 €43.76 €527.17
2 €483.41 €43.76 €527.17
3 €483.41 €43.76 €527.17
4 €507.36 €121.50 €628.86
5 €529.44 €121.50 €650.94
6 €547.65 €121.50 €669.15
7 €561.57 €121.50 €683.07
8 €575.44 €121.50 €696.94
9 €614.20 €121.50 €735.70
10 €614.20 €121.50 €735.70
11 €614.20 €121.50 €735.70
12 €614.20 €121.50 €735.70

Post 1 Jan 2013 PPC Payscales LRA2

Download Non Commissioned Personnel Pay Rates (PDF 84kb)

Pre 01 January 2013 Non PPC Payscales LRA 2

Recruitment Ranks Point 01/10/18
Basic Pay
On enlistment 1 €275.85 €0.00 €275.85
After 1 years service 2 €327.67 €0.00 €327.67
After 2 years service 3 €428.44 €0.00 €428.44
After 3 years service 4 €499.65 €0.00 €499.65


Private, Grade 1/Seaman, 3rd Class €388.23 €0.00 €388.23


Private, 2 Star/Seaman, 2nd Class €467.54 €41.57 €509.11


Private, 3 Star/Seaman, 1st Class
0 - 3 years service 1 €488.48 €41.57 €530.05
Over 3 Years Service 2 €494.57 €115.43 €610.00
Over 4 Years Service 3 €508.80 €115.43 €624.23
Over 5 Years Service 4 €526.27 €115.43 €641.68
Over 6 Years Service 5 €539.64 €115.43 €655.07
6 €552.95 €115.43 €668.38
7 €590.13 €115.43 €705.56

Pre 01 January 2013 Non PPC Payscales LRA 2

Download Non Commissioned Personnel Pay Rates (PDF 84kb)

Read more about Army Training