Police rejoiners: Guidance on changes to police regulations

Rejoining the service

In order to provide more flexible re-entry to the service, changes were proposed to the legislation that governs rejoiner members to police forces in England and Wales as set out in Regulation 10b, Police Regulations 2003.

In 2019, these regulatory changes removed the requirement that former officers must rejoin a police force within five years if they wish to retain their previous rank. Instead, former officers may now rejoin a force even if their previous service ended more than five years before rejoining. They may be appointed to a higher, lower or the same rank, subject to a decision by the chief officer making the appointment.

At the time of this regulatory change, the College published guidance for forces looking to recruit rejoiners, as well as for those who wish to re-enter the service.

Updated rejoiner guidance in response to COVID-19

We have updated this guidance (May 2020) to provide further information in light of COVID-19. The updated document aims to provide guidance for forces establishing or expanding their rejoiner provision at pace, to increase capacity and capability at a time of national crisis. 

Our latest police rejoiners guidance covers:

  • minimum standards for those developing or broadening rejoiner programmes
  • recommendations of good practice
  • advice regarding the emergency curriculum for rejoiners
  • frequently asked questions

In addition, we added a specific section on the Coronavirus Police Retention Scheme (CPRS).

This scheme is designed to provide additional resource and resilience during the Coronavirus pandemic and its aftermath.  The scheme will enable forces to respond to officers who want to return or continue their service and provide resilience in the coming months.

For full information about the changes to police regulations regarding rejoiners, please download the new guidance.

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