The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has dropped a bombshell by hinting it intends to ‘sweep away' the retirement age.
Falling in line with its five-year strategy and current drive to extend the retirement age to 65 so as to provide people with more ‘choice’, the DWP says it intends to provide people above the age of 65 with the right to request working for longer which their employers will have to ‘seriously’ consider.
The startegy report says: "We are committed to supporting people to work longer...We must change the culture that can write people off on the basis of age."
It adds: “In 2011 we will review whether the time is right to sweep away retirement ages altogether.”
According to the DWP, one million people are currently working past the State Pension age, while population projections indicate the number of people aged between 50 and 69 will increase from 13 million to 15.9 million by 2024.
The Government has thereby announced various incentives for people wishing to work longer including the offering of a lump sum payment in excess of £30,000 for people wanting to delay their state pension by five years.
Tied to this, Government this year will launch a national guidance campaign, providing practical guidance on adopting flexible approaches to work and retirement in relation to age, while the age discrimination legislation will also be in focus.
Additionally, in 2006, it will also enact the European Directive on age discrimination, making it unlawful for age discrimination within employment and vocational training.
In accordance, employers will be able to set a compulsory retirement age below 65 with sufficient justification, while they will also be required to consider formally requests from employees to work beyond 65.
After a period of five years the DWP will then formally review whether compulsory retirement ages are required.IFAonline
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