If the Judicial Review is lost there is still:-
Also, whatever the outcome of the Judicial Review we will be pursuing the cases of those members who have bought particular financial packages based on actuarial tables, which assumed RPI. Such packages include purchase of added years; purchase of added pension; allocation of pension; conversion of lump sums into pension; pension splitting on divorce; transfer-in of pension benefits from non-public sector schemes; and actuarially-reduced pensions. There might be others. Undoubtedly, if such packages had been bought from the private sector, the politicians, the media and the Financial Services Authority would have been up in arms about “pensions miss-selling”.
We have had encouraging initial advice from our solicitors and have had tentative discussions with Cabinet Office as to how such cases should be pursued. The Cabinet Office has maintained that it has acted within the scheme rules but, if specific complaints are made by members, they will have to deal with them under the terms of the Internal Disputes Resolution (IDR) procedures. We have argued that it would be sensible to take a number of “lead” cases in the first instance, with other cases being decided in the light of those. The likely route would be a complaint under the IDR procedures. If that were to be rejected, the case could be pursued with to the Pensions Ombudsman. If he were to reject, we could then pursue via the courts.
All this will take time to work out. Nothing has yet been agreed. When we have completed our discussions with our solicitors and with the Cabinet Office, we will issue appropriate advice to members via our Pensioner magazine. Cabinet Office has confirmed that members will have three years from April 2011 in which to lodge complain