Pipin News 2015.
27th October 2015.
The Pensions Ombudsman has upheld a complaint made by one of our Northern Ireland colleagues. This case is particularly unusual because this ex officer has been forced to complain to the ombudsman on three occasions and has been fighting to resolve IOD issues for a period of six years.
PO -7548 Mr X 23rd September 2015
22nd September 2015.
Our colleague Dr J Yardley reports that his protracted case regarding Disablement Gratuity has been finally upheld following an investigation by the Pensions Ombudsman Service. (PO - 6637). Full details will follow shortly.
This latest decision highlights the continued need for IOD pensioners to challenge reviews and decisions made under a system that continues to fail pensioners.
28th June 2015.
College of Policing Review of Force Management of Ill Health Retirements, Injury on Duty Awards and Police Medical Appeal Boards.
Although this particular review doesn’t include the reassessment of injury awards, it does make interesting reading and it is very likely that measures resulting from it will influence the management and conduct of IOD reassessments at some future date when the College turns its attention to IOD reassessments
The College of Policing requested input from the PSNI as well as other forces and bodies and the recent Scoffield Review is mentioned. This review does echo some of the observations made in the Scoffield report regarding the many shortcomings in the current system. The current process lacks credibility and has engendered extreme distrust from those unfortunate to be injured in the course of their duties. It would also appear to be something of a ‘poisoned chalice’ for those who have to administer he system, in particular the SMP.
There is no doubt that the integrity and credibility of the SMP has been severely diminished by the events of the last few years and it is not surprising that Doctors appear to be avoiding Police SMP work. This situation has been caused by bad guidance and policy based on reducing costs regardless of the consequences to injured police officers, serving or retired. It is not the fault of IOD pensioners.
College of Policing Review
29th May 2015
The Pensions Ombudsman has published the latest decision involving an IOD pension.
PO 6391. Mr R McSorley 20th May 2015.
19th May 2015.
The Derbyshire IOD pensioner who was reviewed and reduced to Band One in 2007 and was later responsible for the withdrawal of the HOC46/2004 CRA guidance reports that he has been unsuccessful in his latest attempt to have his IOD pension restored. The Court Order required Derbyshire to appoint an SMP to reconsider the decision to reduce our colleague from Band Three to Band One and the subsequent reconsideration decided that the original decision was correct. Our colleague appealed to the PMAB who have upheld the decision of the SMP.
This is a rather complex case and is far from typical. Our members should not be deterred from fighting their cases through all available avenues. Our colleague in this case has fought a very determined battle and has achieved much, all IODs should applaud his persistence and tenacity.
6th May 2015.
The minutes of the NAMF meeting held on 27th March 2015 are now available via Freedom of Information disclosure:
NAMF Meeting 27th March 2015
The Police Pensions Regulations 2015 are referred to in the above minutes. Please click of the link below to download the new regulations.
Police Pensions Regulations 2015
1st May 2015.
The Scoffield Report: The Northern Ireland Policing Board, which commissioned the report, decided to release only the summary. It refused several FOIA requests and other approaches by NI IOD pensioners and other interested parties to release the entire report. Pressure was brought to bear, and the NIPB has now decided to release the redacted 'missing' 220 pages.
The Scoffield Report (Redacted)
26th April 2015.
A number of IODs have now registered with SafeHorizon UK. The SHUK Blog has highlighted the plight of a PSNI IOD. Please visit the SHUK Blog for the full story on this awful situation. SHUK Blog
Apologies for the temporary loss of the ‘old’ Pipin forum. This appears to have been due to a software glitch and it is now available again.
We have previously reported that some of our colleagues had formed IODPA - The Injury on Duty Pensioners Association: IODPA
IODPA now have a Facebook page at:
13th April 2015.
Please click on the link below for the latest IOD decision from the Pensions Ombudsman.
PO-2705 Ms A McLoughlin 30th March 2015
12th April 2015.
We would like to draw your attention to the web site of Safe Haven UK.
“Safehorizon UK is an independent, voluntary, free support and advocacy service for Police Officers and their families affected by Psychological injury, stress and mental ill health; offering emotional and practical support, advocacy and information.”
There is some very useful information on the SHUK web site which may be of assistance to those members who are extremely dissatisfied with their assessment by selected medical practitioners, particularly those members suffering with PTSD and similar conditions
Safe Horizon UK
30th March 2015.
Please click on the link below for the latest IOD related decision from the Pensions Ombudsman.
PO-2301 Mr B Lightfoot 20th March 2015
27th March 2015.
Although there has been a shortage of news lately, work has been continuing in the background and it appears that the workload of our legal advisers has not diminished with attention being given to a variety of IOD issues. A number of SMP issues are high on the agenda together with disclosure matters etc. Of particular concern is the way that certain SMP’s are conducting reviews. IOD’s have reported arrogance and hostility towards them. Additionally, some IOD’s have expressed concerns that some SMP’s are not complying with the required Regulations. These and other matters will eventually come before independent scrutiny.
Until recently, unlawful Home Office guidance targeted those of us aged 60 (CRA), 65 (SRA) and over. We now have many younger IOD’s being affected. This new ‘generation’ of IOD’s is organising itself and is becoming very active in opposing attacks on IOD pensions. HOC46/2004 was defeated by dogged determination with our members reacting through the processes available. The IOD struggle is likely to continue for some time and new approaches will undoubtedly appear. We draw your attention to the Injury on Duty Pensioners Association (IODPA).
As the situation develops, every individual IOD pensioner, if they are able, needs to challenge any unlawful attempt to reduce our pensions. Every individual needs to consider their rights to appeal any reduction. Legal advice is readily available to you.
30th January 2015.
The new Pipin forum has replaced the original. It has not been possible to carry over either the user database or content from the old one so we have started afresh. Members will therefore need to register on the new forum, please do so. The old forum will remain available so content will not be lost. The increased functionality of the new forum should be very useful to us and we hope that it will improve reliability. Please do not be put off by the advertising banners on the new forum, once registered users are logged in, the ads should disappear. Thanks.
The new Pipin Forum
16th January 2015.
It would appear that Merseyside are embarking on the next round of injury award reviews by contacting members requesting them to complete a questionnaire about their injury award. A number of retired officers who have not been contacted for many years have been required to fill in forms and include some who were told they would not be contacted again. Merseyside have not yet indicated a specific course of action and we do not know, at this stage, what consultation, if any, there has been with Narpo and the Police Federation.
6th January 2015.
Northern Ireland Policing Board - Senior Counsel Review of Injury on Duty Awards. Latest from the NIPB web site.
Thanks to KG for the update.
Senior Counsel Review
1st January 2015.
Last year would appear to have passed without much happening on the IOD front, but that does not reflect the reality of events during 2014.
At New Year 2014 a number of forces were expected to recommence reviews. In the event some of those forces have not yet done so, with other forces conducting what appears to be a limited number of reviews. Our legal advisers continued to advise and represent ex officers throughout the year. Our thanks also to the prominent QC who came forward to advise and assist some of our colleagues in forces that had restarted reviews.
We have made significant progress during 2014:
In February the remnants of the HOC46/2004 guidance were finally declared unlawful and withdrawn. This seriously flawed guidance had sought to make cost savings at the expense of IOD pensioners by attempting to manipulate the review procedure in a way unsupported by the Regulations. What was declared to be guidance intended to promote fairness and cohesion resulted in completely the opposite. It has resulted in a total mess, a fiasco which must have wasted an enormous sum of money and has shown the Home Office and those police forces who adopted the guidance to have acted in a dishonourable manner. It has left pensioners extremely distrustful of their forces and IOD procedures – facts supported by the recent Narpo IOD survey – and called into serious question the impartiality and independent role of the SMP.
Right at the end of the year the Scoffield Review Report was unveiled in Northern Ireland. This was an independent review by Mr David Scoffield QC to conduct a review of the present arrangements for the payment of ill-health pensions and injury on duty awards to former police officers. The report makes very interesting reading and has reportedly been adopted in full by the NIPB. The recommendations and conclusions appear to be fair and accord to many of our own principles. Only parts of the report have been made public and it is too early to predict how this will develop. This report represents a positive step forward in resolving the IOD issues affecting that part of the UK. It is impossible at this stage to see how this review will impact IOD policy on the mainland but, nevertheless, in a system governed by Regulations, there has to uniformity – it is not a postcode lottery.
Despite all that has happened, in some respects we are not much further on. Police forces want to make savings and if they can reduce IOD pensions, they will. The temptation is too great. Over the last few years we have all endured attempts to reduce the IOD pension bill by unlawful manipulation of Regulations and one only has to look at the comments of High Court Judges and the decisions of the Pensions Ombudsman to see the level of unfairness and maladministration that has permeated IOD policies. In the spring of 2014 we became aware of correspondence which exposed the appalling attitude of a Police and Crime Commissioner toward IOD's. That PCC is unlikely to be the only one to hold such views.
We have to continue to challenge any attack on our IOD pensions. Some of our number have been assisted and supported by the Police Federation, others have been less fortunate and a more consistent and robust policy is called for. Narpo have an important role to play and we welcome the improving relationship between Narpo and it's IOD members. However, the success we have achieved have been due to the efforts of the IOD's themselves and that is how we see things continuing during the coming year. It will be the persistent efforts of individuals and groups of motivated IOD's that will move things forward.
When forces 'test the water' and restart their review programmes, we expect more ex officers will join our ranks. Web traffic for the PIPIN web site is very healthy and is increasing rapidly. There are plans for development of the web site during 2015.
2015 is an election year and we should take advantage of any opportunity to highlight the subject of IOD pensions and make our cause an issue.