Who was given protection from the pension changes?

Last updated: 03 Mar 2020

The transitional protections that have been deemed discriminatory treated existing pension scheme members who were in service on 1 April 2012 differently based upon age.

Pension scheme members within 10 years of normal pension age on 1 April 2012 were allowed to continue their membership of their existing pension scheme.

Members with more than 13.5 years to normal pension age became members of the new 2015 schemes on the 1 April 2015.

Those with between 10 and 13.5 years to pension age had a tapered date on which they would join the new scheme.

These protections for the oldest workers were one of two major concessions offered by the coalition government to trade unions in order to reach agreement on reform of public sector pensions for the second time in a decade.

The original proposal from the government was for all members to move to the reformed schemes in April 2015.

Interestingly, Lord Hutton’s 2011 report ‘Independent Public Service Pensions Commission’, which influenced the government’s proposals for reform, noted that “age discrimination legislation also means that it is not possible in practice to provide protection from change for members who are already above a certain age.”

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