In response to the publication of the Pensions Commission's Report last year, the Minister for Social Protection in Ireland has announced some important updates for employers in Ireland regarding retirement ages.
- The age at which workers will be eligible for a State pension or retirement benefit is confirmed as 66;
- Many employers stipulate 65 as the mandatory retirement age in contracts of employment and Employee Handbooks which means there is still a gap between normal retirement age and the age at which a worker is eligible for a State pension;
- Employers in Ireland can still rely on contractual mandatory retirement ages provided a number of conditions are met including that the retirement age is clearly set out in the contract, the retirement age is commonly observed and there is an objective justification for using the mandatory retirement age for each individual worker;
- The Minister announced this week that regulations will be introduced allowing workers to stay in employment up to the State pension age of 66 from 2024; and
- Reforms will be introduced to give workers the right to stay in employment until age 70 to earn enhanced State pension benefits.
"The measures agreed by Cabinet today represent the biggest ever structural reform of the Irish State Pension System. From 2024, Ireland will move to a new ‘flexible pension age’ model, similar to the systems in place in a number of other EU countries."