Can part-time employees claim back years when they were not eligible to belong to their employers’ pension scheme?

Side stepping the issues like a crab!

Back in 1986 when I worked in a school, I was part-time.  My hours depended on the number of children on roll that year so the hours varied from 17 to 25 per week. At that time I was not eligible to belong to the employers pension scheme because I was part-time.  However, since at the time most part-time workers were women, there was a time when this law was disputed on the grounds of indirect sex discrimination.

In 1991 the law was changed and people like me could enter the pension scheme, paying in 6% of their monthly salary.

I continued to work in the school until 1998, paying in to the scheme during those years.

In 2001 another law was passed allowing part-time workers to buy back the missing years, in my case five years worth. We had to put in a claim, which I did, but nothing has ever come of it. Every year I would write to the authority asking what was going on and how much it would cost me to buy back the missing years. I kept being put off.

Now I am retired but still waiting for my State Pension because the Government put it back by two years for people of my age. Here in England we always used to get our State Pension when we turned 60 (women) – 65 (men). Now they are bringing women in line with men and people of my year of birth, i.e. 1951 have to wait till they are 61 and 8 months to get the pension. Those women one year younger than me will have to wait another year and so on until women and men are treated the same. That is not my reason for writing this today though. The point is I want to get the part-time years buy back done so I can start having it and I feel that the Authority is holding back, giving excuses for not giving me the information.

The truth is probably that it is so long now that they would most likely owe me not the other way round because if I’d bought back the five years in 2001 when the law came in, and it had been invested, then by now it would be coming back to me with bells on!

After writing to the Authority every year since (I’ve been very patient), I am now losing my patience. I have written to my Member of Parliament, Kelvin Hopkins and he is using his influence to get the Authority, in this case Luton Borough Council, to speed up and get the calculation done so I can start receiving the benefit.

I’ll let you know how I get on. I’ve now got the bit between my teeth.

If you are affected by this issue, like I am, you can read more about the background here.

11 thoughts on “Can part-time employees claim back years when they were not eligible to belong to their employers’ pension scheme?

    • Yes and here Loren. However I fell miffed because all my working life I have paid into the pension scheme, expecting to receive my pension from the age of 60, only to be told at the age of 58 that my pension date was going to be put back by one year and eight months even though they have received from me all the necessary money and years required for me to start taking it at 60. It amounts to approximately £10,000, which is a significant amount. It has necessitated in me having to work for an extra two years during which time I have been unable to help care for my grandchild as often as needed.

    • No, well obviously it’s different all round the world. In the UK women have been ‘lucky’ up to now in getting their state pensions at 60. It is more fair to either be the same as men i.e. 65 or to bring the two in line and settle for e.g. 63.
      What is annoying to me and others of my age is that all our working lives we paid in to the state pension scheme only to be told now (when it’s too late to do anything about it) that we have to wait another nearly two years!
      Women who are one or two years younger than me have to wait even longer.

      • That’s when we get ours (if we’re born before a certain year – I think it’s 1960). If you’re born after that, the pension age is 65 (I only just managed to slip in there!)

      • Ah! I see so they’ve made a one-step jump over there. Very interesting. Very hard luck if you happen to be born on 1st January 1960 isn’t it!!!
        Over her they are phasing it in gradually so my friend who is 2 years older than me got her state pension when she turned 60 but every year after that we have to wait an extra year.
        As I said before, it isn’t fair because people like me paid in all their lives to get their pension at age 60 and now have to wait an extra 2 years to get it. That’s an awful long time.

  1. Wishing you luck with this Oma, yes I know I was born in 54 and my pension age is now 67… Bummer… Its always the same though don’t you think,,, If we owe them anything its taken out of our earning straight away, When they owe us anything we have to fight for it… in triplicate..

    • That is so true Sue! I’m so sorry you have to wait soooooo long for yours. Your age group is the very worst affected isn’t it and really Mr. Cameron should do something to help. Keep lobbying if you can. Don’t give up.

      • Thanks Oma, I have a small private pension which is VERY small… I can take when Im 60 but it is really useless on its own… Arrrgh well…. I have to think I am so so lucky in other ways….
        I so hope your MP gets his teeth into your complaint and can get things moving for you…

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