We have been informed that a consultation on GMP equalisation can be expected “around Easter”.
On 28 January 2010 the then Pensions minister issued a written ministerial statement to the effect that schemes should be equalising GMPs accrued from 17 May 1990 but without explaining when or how (see Pensions Update, February 2010). Not surprisingly, the Government received a number of representations from the pensions industry and has since taken further legal advice, which has apparently confirmed the Government’s original position. It therefore intends to amend the relevant legislation.
There are two specific issues on which the DWP would welcome comment, either now, or as part of the formal consultation:
- Should the amendment refer explicitly to the fact that schemes should not look for comparators when equalising GMPs accrued from 17 May 1990 or should it refer more broadly to not seeking comparators when rectifying inequality which is not compatible with European law on equal pay? and
- Is there anything that the Government could do to assist schemes in fulfilling their legal duties in this area?