As we have previously reported, the default retirement age is being abolished from the beginning of October this year. The Government have now produced some transitional provisions which deal with the period from 30 March 2011 to 30 September 2011. 30 March 2011 is the last day on which the 6 month notice of retirement can be served in order to expire on or before 30 September 2011.
Employers will still be able to give retirement notices before 6 April 2011 using the existing short notice provisions, but if they do so, the employee will be able to claim up to 8 weeks’ wages as compensation. The short notice provisions will be abolished from 6 April 2011.
If notice of retirement has already been given to employees who reach 65 after 1 October 2011, those notices will not be valid and the compulsory retirement in question would not take place. The exception to this would be where the employer already has a specific retirement age that it can justify, e.g. for pilots.
The principles of the abolition of the default retirement age are simple; the application of the transitional provisions may not be so simple in practice.
If you would like to talk through a situation you are dealing with, or if you need advice on any aspect of employment law, please contact any member of the Pure Employment Law team (01243 836840 or [email protected])