Pensions: Part Time Workers & Comparators

Book your free initial call

    We endeavour to make an initial response to all enquiries within 24 hours but please be aware that on some occasions due to prior commitments or volume of calls we will not be able to respond in that time frame. We also operate a 48 hour return policy. This return policy means that if we have not responded with 48 hours of your initial enquiry we are unable to do so due to current workloads and we will destroy your data accordingly. This policy ensures you are not left waiting and have the certainty that your data is not compromised. In most instances however we are able to make contact within a 24 hour time frame. Please note our free initial advice service is available to clients at our total discretion and if your case is of a complex nature we may not be able to offer you a free consultation. However in these instances we will advise you what the charge would be for an initial fixed fee consultation.
  • (view our privacy statement)
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

In Dr Parker v MDU Services Ltd the Claimant argued that the pension scheme offered by her employer was unfair and indirectly discriminated against any worker with a mixture of both full and part time service. The Claimant had been employed for a total of 27 years and this equated to 21 years full-time service. The maximum pension would have been available to an employee with 20 years’ service and yet the Claimant received 21/27 of the maximum and she claimed that this was discriminatory. This particular scheme was unusual as the rights and rates depended on the date and age an employee joined the scheme.

The tribunal found that the Claimant had missed a crucial point when using her comparator. It was important to use a comparator that joined the scheme at the same time and age as the Claimant. In this situation the comparator would have accrued the same pension entitlement as the Claimant and showed that there was, therefore, no discrimination.

The EAT held that the “degree of copying and pasting” of the Respondent’s submissions, from Andrew Short QC, into the tribunal judgment “was extraordinary” but although this approach was unsatisfactory it did not affect the decision.

Written by

Edward Aston
5th December 2017