25 February 2011

We mentioned in news last week that the draft regulations for the repeal of the default retirement age included an unusual change in the transitional arrangements. According to a news release from Pinsent Masons BIS has unofficially admitted that it was not their intention to exclude employees who have already reached 65 before April 2011.

The report reads:

“The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) issued draft regulations dealing with the repeal of the default retirement age last week. The draft regulations contained what many thought was a drafting anomaly which, if not rectified, could mean that notices of retirement already given to employees are not covered by the transitional provisions. This is because the transitional provisions only apply to employees who reach the age of 65 between 6 April 2011 and 30 September 2011 and don't apply to those who have already reached 65 by 5 April 2011.

Pinsent Masons understands that a spokesperson at BIS has now said that it was not their intention to exclude those people who will have reached age 65 before 6 April 2011 from the transitional provisions. BIS are therefore currently reviewing the draft regulations to see if they require amendment or whether an amendment would be a good idea in any case for the sake of clarity.

Hopefully, the regulations will be amended so that employees must simply reach 65 by September 2011 without the need for them to actually turn 65 between 6 April and 30 September 2011.

BIS will need to act quickly if they are to amend the Regulations. It is hoped that they will re-lay updated draft regulations before Parliament as soon as it sits again on Monday 28 February.”