Pensions ruling could cost employers £17 billion

Employers face a multi-million pound bill following a ruling
that part-time workers previously denied pension rights might be entitled to
compensation backdated to 1976.

Employers argued that the right should only be backdated two
years in line with the UK equal pay rules. But the unions, led by the TUC,
convinced the House of Lords that contributions should be backdated twenty-five
years, when European law first required equality in pensions.

Although it is unclear exactly how much yesterday’s decision
will cost employers, estimates range from £4bn to £17bn.

The CBI described the ruling as “disappointing”.

By Paul Nelson

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