Retired Clergy Fees

The current fee payable to clergy who are not licensed but who hold PTO (within Chester Diocese), whose names appear in the relevant sections of the current diocesan yearbook, for taking Sunday and mid-week services, baptisms and sessions of visiting during vacancies, sabbaticals, holidays and sickness cover in 2024 is £49.60* per service. (The rate for services from 1 March 2023 up to 31 December 2023 was £47.20 per service and prior to this the rate for services held between 1 January 2023 up to and including 28 February 2023 was £49.60 per service). These fees are not reclaimable from the DBF with the exception of those paid out during a vacancy.

We expect the fees will next be updated in January 2025. 

In order to reclaim fees paid during a vacancy, you should submit a claim in writing (by letter or email to Maxine Southwick) and include the dates and times of services, names of the presiding ministers (who must hold Bishop's PTO and not be licensed) and the amounts paid.  Please note that reimbursement will only be made to the parish for the period once the official vacancy has started - i.e. the day after the outgoing minister has retired or is licensed to their new post.  The period between a minister moving out of the vicarage and their official retirement/licensing date is classed as holiday leave and the costs for services during this time are not reimbursed by the DBF. 

The service fee should be paid along with any travel expenses at the HMRC recommended rate which is currently 45p per mile.  Mileage expenses are not reclaimable from the DBF at any time.

Clergy holding PTO (retired or otherwise) should continue to declare fees to HMRC.  The DBF has received advice that no employment relationship exists between the DBF and the retired clergy person as a result of these payments.

Fees payable to retired clergy and others holding PTO (who are not licensed), for weddings and funerals usually* equate to 80% of the current DBF fees for such services.  The current rates are detailed on pages 3-6 of the current monthly fees returns forms, which can be found here.

*Please note: The fees due to retired ministers and those with PTO for funeral services held solely at a crematorium, equate to 80% of the net DBF fee after the deduction of the DBF's voluntary grant to PCC's for administering these fees.  For actual amounts payable, please see the Retired Clergy/PTO Fees Sheets on the current Fees Form, found on the Forms page of the Fees section of this website.

The fees detailed are only payable to retired clergy holding PTO or others holding PTO within Chester Diocese.  Fees are not permitted to be paid to any licensed clergy, or those holding PTO within another Diocese (retired or otherwise).  If in doubt, or you have any queries, please contact Maxine Southwick for assistance.


Further guidance relating to retired clergy parochial fees can be found on the Parochial Fees page of the website here.

Page last updated: Monday 8th April 2024 1:15 PM
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