BIS is consulting on the Government’s proposal to abolish the default retirement age of 65 with effect from 1 October 2011 following a phasing out of the statutory retirement procedures. The consultation proposes that transitional arrangements will commence on 6 April 2011. Employers with employees reaching retirement age in 2011 should be considering their options and arrangements now as they will need to justify objectively any retirement taking effect after 1 October 2011. No new statutory notices of intended retirement may be issued after 6 April 2011.

As a consequence businesses will have to review their pension and benefits schemes as well as management and employment practices as a whole. It is likely that many people will work beyond the age of 65 not only because they want to, but also because they have to, so new flexible working arrangements will be required. Consultation closes on 21 October 2010.