McCloud & Ors and Mostyn & Ors v The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice & MoJ (Case 2201483/2015; 2205075/2015)

Claim by 210 judges that changes to the Judicial Pension Scheme amounted to less favourable treatment because of their age and in some cases race and sex. The claim was upheld.

Before 1 April 2015, the Claimants were all members of the Judicial Pension Scheme (the JPS). After this date they were all compulsorily transferred into a replacement pension scheme, the New Judicial Pension Scheme (the NJPS). The NJPS provided for less valuable pension benefits for the members but relevant to this claim transitional provisions permitted older judges to either remain in the JPS until retirement or until the end of a period of tapered protection (a period between April 2015 and February 2022) depending on their age. The Claimants claimed that these transitional provisions amounted to age discrimination and in some cases indirect race and sex discrimination. The Respondents conceded that the transitional provisions involved less favourable treatment because of age and that they had a disproportional impact on female and BAME judges. However, they argued that the transitional provisions were a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim of protecting those judges closest to retirement from the financial effects of pension reforms and therefore the differences in treatment were justified and lawful.

The ET ruled in favour of the Claimants. The Respondents had failed to adduce any evidence of disadvantage suffered by the fully protected and taper protected groups or any social policy objective which was served by treating the older judges more favourably than the younger judges. The Respondents had failed to demonstrate beyond the level of mere generalisations how consistency in the matter of transitional provisions was capable of contributing to their social policy objective. The ET added that the transitional provisions were not a reasonably necessary means of achieving the Respondents' aim because they went beyond what was necessary to achieve consistency or protect those closest to retirement.

Read the full text of the ET case here

Published: 18/01/2017 10:37

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