Planning Retirement Working past Retirement Age

Working past Retirement Age

Currently, your employer is able to offer you retirement once you reach the age of 65, which is a choice many people choose to take. However, legislation will be put into place in late 2011 which means that you can request to work beyond this age. Your employer cannot refuse your request without due consideration.

Requesting to work longer

When you are nearing the age of 65, your employer is required to notify you both that your retirement is approaching, but that you may request to continue working. The elimination of the compulsory retirement age will come into effect on 1 October 2011. If you wish to continue working, you must notify your employer at least 3 months before your date of retirement.  The request must be made in writing, and detail how long you plan to work; whether for indefinitely, a fixed period of time or a specified date.

Your employer can simply accept your request, but in some cases, they may want to discuss the prospect of continued work with you. At such a discussion, you can give your reasons for wanting to work longer, and your employer may want to negotiate the terms of your continued employment. For example, they can discuss different working hours, or alter your date of retirement. However, the outcome may also be that your employer refuses your request.

If your request is refused

Whatever the outcome of your request, you may appeal against it. An appeal is your last opportunity to discuss working past retirement age and is similar to any earlier meetings you may have attended with your employer regarding this issue. Your employer may again re-negotiate the terms you originally requested, or they may still refuse to grant your request. They are not legally required to give you a reason if they do refuse again, but must justify their decision before an Employment Tribunal if necessary. You will be permitted only one appeal.

Your rights

Your employer should make you aware of the opportunity to work past the age of 65 if you want to, when they inform you of your impending retirement date. If you choose to pursue this, you are also permitted to have someone accompany you during any discussions or an appeal. This accompanier may be an employee or a trade union representative. They cannot answer any questions for you, but they are able to talk over any issues with you at the meeting.

If you do wish to work past the traditional age of retirement, it is important to attend any meetings or appeals held to support your request.


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