A group of women who demanded an investigation after the Government failed to communicate important state pension changes are celebrating as an announcement was made by an ombudsman.
Woman born in the 1950s would have lost out as a result of the changes and set up the Women Against State Pension Inequality, known as WASPI, as a result.
Leicestershire Live reports women suddenly discovered they had years to wait until they could get their state pensions as the old rule of women retiring at 60 and men 65 changed.
After many complaints from women born in the 1950s about how the change had affected them, an investigation last summer found the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) was “inadequate” in its communications with women impacted by the changes.
The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) review found “failings” in the way the DWP communicated from 2005 onwards.
That decision was as a major victory for many women born in the 1950s but the issue was not over.
The PHSO is now having to consider whether maladministration led to “injustice” for those impacted.
In the latest update, an important date has been shared, putting a time limit on how long that new review is likely to take.
The PHSO said: “We have asked the DWP to send us further evidence by the end of March 2022.
“We cannot progress two stages of the investigation without that evidence.”
Stage two will look at whether there was injustice for the complainants, but the decision is not a foregone conclusion.
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If it is eventually determined that there was an injustice that has not already been remedied, the third step will occur.
This could involve making recommendations to put things right.
A WASPI spokesperson told Express.co.uk: “WASPI – Women Against State Pension Inequality – are pleased that some time constraint has been added.
“This will enable this process to be concluded as quickly as possible.”
“WASPI is calling for fair and fast compensation for all women born in the 1950s affected by the maladministration the DWP already found by the Ombudsman.”
A Department for Work and Pensions spokesperson told Express.co.uk: “Both the High Court and Court of Appeal have supported the actions of the DWP, under successive governments dating back to 1995, and the Supreme Court refused the claimants permission to appeal.
“In a move towards gender equality, it was decided more than 25 years ago to make the state pension age the same for men and women.”
The spokesperson added it would be inappropriate to comment further while the PHSO investigation remains ongoing.