10th December 2013.

Because we were ‘contracted out’, many of us of state pension age are not entitled to a ‘second state pension’ and receive only to the minimum amount of state pension. In the Autumn Statement, the Chancellor has indicated that the Government intends to allow the purchase of a top up which will enable us to enhance the state pension.

Click here for more on this…

27th  November 2013.

One of our Northern Ireland colleagues draws our attention to a judicial decision from earlier this year.

Mr D Hawthorne (Queens Bench Division. Judicial Review).

Thanks to DB for this item.

14th November 2013

The Pensions Ombudsman has decided in favour of a former PSNI officer in another recent determination.

Mr R Collum       (P O 707    4th October 2013)

Pensions Ombudsman

17th October 2013.

Our colleague, Dr John Yardley notifies us of the result of his complaint to the Pensions Ombudsman. Following a very long frustrating battle that John has been involved in with his force, this particular determination concerns Reg. 32(2) reconsideration. The determination is worth reading carefully and the comments of the PO are of interest to us all. It is disgraceful that IOD pensioners should have to go to such lengths over such long periods to protect their pensions.

Dr J Yardley.      (P O.103.   10th October 2013).

26th September 2013.

Update: In May 2012 we included the following News Item on the 'Quasi Double Taxation Issue affecting many IOD pensioners:


There is a tax issue with the deduction of certain DWP benefits from IOD pensions. Our legal advisers are currently assessing the situation which has lead to the deduction of the gross amounts and not the net amounts (after taxation). We understand that some police authorities have required pensioners to claim entitlements and have made deductions whether the benefit has been claimed or not. We believe that this situation may apply in particular to a specific group who retired between April 1995 and April 2001.

Our South Wales ADPO representative is coordinating this and can supply further details and wishes also to register a number of those affected in order to pursue this matter.


 

To update: Sufficient names were put forward and the issue was submitted to Counsel for an opinion. This issue is still being examined by the legal team and certain elements have been identified which require further consideration. We are delighted that the Police Federation are also now involved in this matter and are assisting with funding.


20th September 2013.

Details of the latest Pensions Ombudsman determination relating to IOD pension matters is available on the PO website. This decision concerns the deduction of Incapacity/Invalidity benefit from IOD pensions and relates to an unusual set of circumstances. The document requires careful reading although it would appear not to influence the great majority of cases where the relevant benefit is claimed  for a condition other that the injury for which the IOD pension is paid.

Mr B E Owen      (PO.19      31st July 2013.)

Pensions Ombudsman

With Forces starting or about to restart IOD Review programmes, we have now added solicitor Mark Lake of Lake Jackson Solicitors to our Contacts list in the Members Section of this web site. This will allow additional easy direct access to experienced legal assistance.

15th September 2013.

Concerns have been raised by one of our AdfPO Reps who has received emails from IOD pensioners regarding the unwillingness or refusal of certain forces to pay expenses to pensioners attending reviews. This does not, as yet, appear to be a widespread problem but it is worrying that some forces are acting in this manner. However our rep informs us that he has some experience of using the small claims court successfully in such cases. Of course it should not be necessary to go to these lengths in order to recover legitimate expenses incurred when attending reviews demanded by forces. Hopefully the forces concerned will see sense and act in a more reasonable and responsible manner, after all, the SMP’s and others involved will have the full benefit of generous expenses.

More on this on our forum.

We would also be very interested to hear from IOD pensioners, if any, who continue to receive financial support from their forces to help with the additional medical costs, such as prescription charges, physiotherapy, specialist medical services or equipment relating to their injuries.


9th July 2013.

Our Contact list in the Members Section of this web site now includes direct contact details for leading IOD Solicitor Ron Thompson of Lake Jackson Solicitors. Ron’s expertise in IOD matters has been well demonstrated over the last few years. Ron welcomes enquiries from all force areas and, as reported on our forum, confirms his willingness to assist Derbyshire IOD’s who will be facing the force’s new review system in the coming months.

10th July 2013.

Derbyshire has notified some IOD pensioners that Derbyshire Police has taken a decision to reinstate a review process commencing in December 2013.

Apparently the protocol has yet to be finalised and Derbyshire are working with a number of other forces.

Reviews will not be undertaken before December 2013 but potential timing for the review of individual IOD pensioners should become clearer by August. Previously, Derbyshire has written to different IOD’s informing them that reviews would restart in October.

We note that Derbyshire still has outstanding issues with at least one of our colleagues resulting from the implementation of Home Office Circular 46/2004 dating back six years.

28th June 2013.

Our members inform us via our forum that Cambridgeshire are preparing to resume reviews and documentation has been sent out to some IOD pensioners. Otherwise things remain quiet. Please let us know of any developments as and when they occur.

23rd May 2013.

Further to our previous News updates on the IOD situation in Northern Ireland, our colleagues there tell us that the Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Policing Board has agreed to remove misleading and incorrect guidance on injury pensions from the NIPB web site. This is seen as another step in the right direction.


15th May 2013.

Our colleagues in Northern Ireland inform us that since 7 March 2013 the Policing Board has suspended all injury on duty reviews and appeals until further notice. A working group chaired by the Policing Board Chief Executive and comprising of various stakeholders has been set up to consider the current policies and procedures for the review of injury on duty awards and make recommendations to the Policing Board and Department of Justice on present policies and procedures.


The problems suffered by so many of our colleagues through N.I.Policing Board (Reviews and Reconsiderations) and DOJ(NI) (Appeals and Appeal Reconsiderations) are now coming to the surface. The three recent P.O determinations (reported here on our 10th May News update) reflect the IOD situation in Northern Ireland since 2007 and it is thought likely many other retirees have had similar treatment but for many varied reasons have not challenged the decisions.


It is hoped that the new Working Party will come up with proposals and recommendations to sort out past mistakes, hopefully apply retrospective bandings to those who have been affected and pay back arrears, in addition to a way forward for the future. Our NI members, who last week met senior NIPB officials, are optimistic that the NIPB will want to rectify the errors, mistakes and policies of the past and the working party is the route taken to achieve that objective.


Please see item 11.2 Review of Injury on Duty Awards in the document linked below:


Human Resources Committee Meeting 21st March 2013


10th May 2013.

The Pensions Ombudsman has released three new decisions, all of which relate to former Northern Ireland Officers:

Mr J Black        (630     30th April 2013)

Mr   M              (643     30th April 2013)

Mr D Diamond    (828     30th April 2013)

Pensions Ombudsman


22nd April 2013.

Derbyshire have written some IOD’s informing them that the review programme is to recommence in October 2013. The resumption of reviews is not unexpected and Derbyshire had it’s new IOD protocol passed by the former Police Authority last year. It appears from the letter that the protocol is not yet finalised and as IOD’s have not been consulted, although NARPO and the Federation were belatedly involved, we are unaware of the final composition of the policy.

Thanks to TM for the update.

5th April 2013.

One of our members has reported on our forum that DCC Feavyour (Cambs) is to retire in September. As we know, DCC Feavyour’s IOD policy was adopted by his force last year and, after reportedly taking the ACPO lead on IOD pensions, it was thought possible that his policy could form the basis of policy nationally. However, this unexpected news will call into question just how IOD policy might develop in the future. DCC Feavyour made a very earnest effort to resolve a serious issue and we hoped that he would be crucial in the creation of a viable, fair and sustainable IOD policy throughout the country. We are not aware of any opposition to his proposals or any conflicts affecting his retirement although with the recent appearance of draft guidance from NAMF, some speculation is likely. Pensioners and their forces have been ill served by ‘guidance’ concocted by apparatchiks. Lets hope, as we enter the next stage of this saga that lessons have been learned and history is not repeated.

DCC Feavyour to Retire

3rd April 2013.

A number of relevant new decisions are available from the Pensions Ombudsman web site. In the case of Ms Beale, there appears, among other issues, to have been an attempt to reduce an IOD pension because of medical conditions not related to the index injury - something which the new draft ‘guidance’ from NAMF appears to suggest! The case of Mr Hathaway is interesting in the it centres on the requirement to pay costs if an appeal is judged to be frivolous or vexatious (something which has been threatened in the past to intimidate IOD’s).

Mr N Hathaway (684.        18th March 2013)

Mr J Jayes         (279.        26th March 2013)

Mr A Douglas    (84432/2. 26th March 2013)

Ms H Beale       (84102/2   27th March 2013)

Mr N Bidgood    (72204/5  28th March 2013)

Pensions Ombudsman.


27th March 2013.

The National Attendance Management Forum (NAMF) has issued draft Injury Award Policy guidance to forces. At this early stage, the feeling is that this may replace Home Office guidance.  Last year, you may recall, DCC Feavyour (Cambridgeshire) formulated a new IOD policy for his force which took into account the views of IOD pensioners. Mr Feavyour’s honourable efforts were generally welcomed and it appeared that, with Mr Feavyour apparently taking the ACPO lead, his policy may form the basis for IOD policies nationally. The issue of this new guidance could indicate that particular scenario may have changed.

NAMF is a ‘talking shop’ without legal authority and the guidance is just that - guidance. Forces are bound by Regulations, not guidance. We have already suffered one disgraceful attempt to subborn the Regulations with ‘guidance’ which ended in a debacle for the Home office and the forces concerned.

For your further information, the NAMF guidance documents can be downloaded from our Information Page in the Members section of this web site under the heading “Post HOC46/2004 Policies”

We have unconfirmed information that a Midlands force is restarting reviews and we were told some time ago that another force in the same region will be commencing their review programme ‘but not before April’.

14th March 2013.

Things are still very quiet but no doubt that will change as forces implement their new IOD policies and commence their Review programmes.

The Pensions Ombudsman has another two new decisions which have gone in favour of the IOD pensioner: (Please see Pensions Ombudsman web site to download the determinations).

Mr A (83467 11th Feb.2013)

Mr M Whitehurst  (87756 12th Feb 2013)

Pensions Ombudsman


NARPO have issued some clarification regarding the introduction of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA). This might be of interest to some of our members whether they are Narpo members or not.  ESA   (thanks to Steve Edwards, Narpo).

15th February 2013.

There are a number of recent relevant decisions available on the Pension Ombudsman web site:

Mr G Doughty (78403, 1st Nov 2012)

Mr J Marsden (87657, 26thNov 2012)

Mr B O’Mahony (83467, 11th Feb 2013).

Pensions Ombudsman


8th February 2013.

Our attention has been drawn to the Public Services Pensions Bill currently progressing through Parliament and the House of Lords. Of particular concern is Clause 3 of the Bill, which in its unamended form, amongst other things, allows for retrospective changes including reductions to accrued benefits in public sector pension schemes. We are advised that this provision, known as a “Henry VIII clause” could grant wide powers to government to allow retrospective changes in the future through secondary legislation thus reducing the safeguards and scrutiny for any changes made.

BBC Democracy Live

GovToday

11th January 2013.

The Jackson Reforms will take effect on 1 April 2013. For legal proceedings started after this date, successful claimants will lose the ability to be reimbursed success fees arising under “no win no fee” conditional fee agreements, and “after the event” insurance premiumsmore….


The current funding arrangements have benefited IOD pensioners in a number of high profile cases and we have been aware for some time that changes were proposed. Any IOD’s wishing to pursue cases, particularly those that can be initiated in the near future should seek the advice of our legal team.. Clearly, after the reforms are in place, different funding arrangements will apply. ..jackson reforms explanatory video..

..more on the jackson reforms…

1st January 2013.

2012 was a successful year for us. The parts of HOC46/2004 guidance relating to IOD pension reduction at the age of 65 were finally declared unlawful and withdrawn and whilst the remainder of the guidance may remain, it does seem to have been quietly dropped. Guidance suggested by HOC46/2004 has proved to be a very expensive mistake for the forces that implemented it. There is always the possibility that the Home Office may, at some point, issue new guidance, but in the meantime a number of police forces have formulated new IOD pension policies which are claimed to be in accordance with the regulations.

2012 also saw the end of the old Police Authorities and their replacement with Police and Crime Commissioners. We already know of one PCC who has confirmed his support of his forces new IOD policy - a policy which was formulated without any consultation with IOD pensioners, nor we understand, Police Federation or Narpo.

It is likely, therefore, that 2013 will present further challenges for us.  Inevitably, issues will arise that will need clarification and it is not difficult to see where some of these issues may lie. Fortunately we are organised and have gained much knowledge. We also have an excellent legal team to advise and represent us.

Please remember that much of our information comes from individual IOD’s and reflect their experiences. We would like you to share your information - please do so by submitting news and information to pipin.news@gmail.com.