Phasing out the default retirement age: impact assessment

Phasing out the default retirement age: impact assessment
Document type
Impact Assessment
Corporate author(s)
Great Britain. Department of Trade and Industry
Date of publication
1 January 2011
People management: all aspects of managing people, Management & leadership: including strategy, public sector management, operations and production
Business and management
Material type

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This is the impact assessment of the government's proposal for phasing out of the default retirement age (DRA). A review carried out in 2009-10 showed that only a minority of employers using a compulsory retirement age and most requests by employees to stay on in work are accepted. For the majority of employers the right to request procedure is an unnecessary cost and represents a regulatory failure. Intervention is also justified on equity grounds to reduce the number of older employees forced to retire against their will. The government's Coalition Agreement also states that 'the parties agree to phase out the Default Retirement Age (DRA)'. This supports the wider government policy interventions related to demographic change and the economic and other benefits of extending working lives. People are living longer and healthier lives, and increasing numbers want to stay in the workforce beyond age 65. The government wants to both facilitate this and correct the regulatory failure. The Employment Equality (Age) Regulations came into force on 1 October 2006 to prohibit discrimination in employment on the grounds of age and included the introduction of a national Default Retirement Age (DRA) of 65 (subject to a review and possible removal after 5 years) and the prohibiting of compulsory retirement below 65 unless objectively justified. 

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