The Government published the findings of their review into survivor benefits in occupation pension schemes today [26 June 2014]. It has conducted a thorough review into the inequalities that exist in the system for married men that survive their wife and for survivors from same-sex marriages and estimates that the cost of removing the inequalities could be £3bn, with the lion’s share falling on the public-sector. The Government is now considering these costs and the potential impact on pension schemes, before making a decision on whether the law should be changed.
David Brooks, Technical Director at BROADSTONE, commented:
“Ignoring these inequalities is not an option. The Government itself says that it believes that there should not be inequalities between same-sex and opposite sex couples in the pensions system and cost and complexity cannot be a valid reason for not amending the rules.
“The Government should now, during this fallow period while we await the next election, take steps to draft and present the required legislation for consultation on its implementation. By continuing to do nothing, more individuals will be effected by the payment of unequal and unfair benefits following the death of a loved one.”