In 2015 the Government introduced reforms to public sector pensions, meaning most public sector workers were moved into new pension schemes in 2015. Most Civil Servants were moved into the alpha pension scheme.
In December 2018, the Court of Appeal ruled that the ‘transitional protection’ offered to some members of the judicial and fire fighters’ schemes as part of the reforms amounted to unlawful discrimination. The details of the ruling are available here:
The Government is seeking permission to appeal this decision. If this is unsuccessful, the court will require steps to be taken to compensate employees who were transferred to the new schemes.
The Government was undertaking valuations of public service pensions including assessing the cost of schemes against the ‘cost cap’, which could have resulted in automatic changes to employee benefits. However because of the uncertainty surrounding the McCloud case, the cost cap element of the valuations has been put on hold until the court case has been resolved. The link to the Ministerial Statement setting out the reason for the pause is provided below.
Impact of the Court of Appeal Ruling
At this point in time the legal process is ongoing and it is therefore not possible to say whether there will be an impact on the civil service pension schemes. However please be assured that the pension you have earned to date is safe.
We will provide a further update as soon as more information becomes available.