There is no longer a set Retirement age and an employer cannot dismiss an older worker on the grounds of retirement. Older employees can choose when they retire and claim any occupational pension they are entitled to. Employers should have a ‘Retirement Policy’ as part of the Employee Handbook to inform all employees of the process to follow should they choose to retire.
Employers of employees should:
- Give regular appraisals so that all employees understand the company’s expectations and how to achieve them.
- Monitor progress and identify any difficulties employees are having.
- Address poor performance, making the employees aware they are not meeting expectations and keep a record of these conversations on file.
- Where health is an issue, employees must provide sufficient Doctor’s notes to enable the employer to understand the condition and whether further support is required.
- Older employees may develop physical impairments which could be classed as a disability under the Equality Act; employers have a duty of care to make reasonable adjustments to enable them to continue in their role.
Any failure to not to address any of the above issues consistently and fairly could mean employers face costly unfair dismissal and age discrimination claims.
In some cases, employers can have a compulsory retirement age only if they are objectively able to justify it.
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