Members consider retirement options

THE VALUE of public service pensions is set to fall from the end of next February in line with pay cuts introduced in 2010. With 29th February 2012 the last date on which eligible staff can retire with pension benefits calculated on the basis of pre-2010 pay scales, many IMPACT members are now considering their options.

During the summer the Government announced that public servants and non-commercial semi-state staff who intend to retire before the end of next February must give three months notice of their intention to retire or face possible delays in the payment of their pensions.

The February 2012 changes will see significant and unfair pension reductions, which will have a bigger effect on low incomes than the 2011 cuts for existing pensioners.  A table outlining the difference in pension terms between those retiring before and after February 2012, which shows the differences at various levels of pension between the effects of the 2011 pension reductions and the effects of the pay reductions on pensions after February 2012, is available HERE.

The new three-month retirement notice period is meant to allow management and unions to anticipate the number of departures and make plans for work allocation. Staff may withdraw their notice before the retirement date.

Meanwhile, the Government has said that legislation to introduce a different pension scheme for new entrants to the public service will be published soon. This will give new staff pensions based on career average salaries rather than the salary from which they retire.