Retirement can be compulsory

Earlier this week we saw how the rules on retirement are going to change in 2011. Well as if by luck, the European Court of Justice has now given a ruling that will be of interest to UK employers that still want to keep a default retirement age. In a German case, Rosenblatt v Oellerking, a provi

Earlier this week we saw how the rules on retirement are going to change in 2011. Well as if by luck, the European Court of Justice has now given a ruling that will be of interest to UK employers that still want to keep a default retirement age.

In a German case, Rosenblatt v Oellerking, a provision in the law that allowed for contracts to terminate automatically on an employees 65th birthday was held to be legal, but only if the employee is entitled to a state pension and the automatic termination was permitted by collective agreement.

So although the judgment is, on the face of it discriminatory, it is justified on the basis that it allows the young to rise through the ranks. It helped that the collective element meant that it covered everyone and that the state pension gave the employee an alternative, if diminished, form of income.
This was first published in December 2010

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