Women lose pension age case

Many column inches have been taken up with the case of the so-called 'Waspi' women (Women Against State Pension Inequality).

The Court of Appeal has now passed judgement on the case in which it had to decide whether the Pensions Acts made between 1995 and 2014, which equalised the state pension age for men and women and then raised the state pension age for both genders, gave rise to unlawful discrimination.

Workers are legally protected from discrimination in the workplace and in wider society. The argument in relation to the changes to the state pension age is that the women affected were not give sufficient notice by the government to prepare for up to six years without their state pension.It was argued that equalising the state pension age would result in either direct discrimination on the basis of age or indirectly on the basis of gender or a combination of age and gender.

The Court held that the women did not face discrimination on the grounds of sex and age and that adopting the same state pension age for men and women did not amount of unlawful discrimination under EU law or the European Convention on Human Rights. The Court was sympathetic to the women's case but found that there had been sufficient advertising of the changes by the government and accepted the need to equalize pension payments between men and women.

Pensions are a notoriously difficult area, and they are relevant to significant number of areas where someone might take specialist legal advice. For example, if someone moves jobs, they may hold a number of workplace pensions, it is also important to ensure that any pension entitlement is discussed when getting a divorce.

Pensions are also relevant if someone has to visit our private client team, whether to make a will or if a spouse or civil partner dies.

Make sure you raise any pension concerns with us when discussing your affairs.

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