INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
THE UNIVERSITY OF DUBLIN (TRINITY COLLEGE)
- AND -
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Ms Doyle
Worker Member: Ms Tanham
1. The University of Dublin, Trinity College Pension Scheme.
2. The case concerns a Worker who wishes to be retrospectively entered into the closed Master Pension Scheme from the Model Pension Scheme he is currently in. It is his contention that his current scheme offers reduced benefits while Management confirm that while the benefits are not exactly the same they vary only slightly as both are Defined Benefit Schemes.
On the 12th April, 2013 the Worker referred the issue to the Labour Court, in accordance with Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 31st July, 2013.
The Worker agreed to be bound by the Court’s Recommendation.
3. 1. Since the introduction of the Protection of Employees (Fixed Term Work) Act 2003 the onus was on the College to enter all Employees both permanent and temporary into the Master Pension Scheme, this was not done.
2. The Worker is seeking to be retrospectively transferred into the Master Pension Scheme as and from 5th July 2004.
4. 1. The Worker has been engaged in a number of different roles within the College since 2004, he was not entered into the Master Pension Scheme as only permanent staff were eligible for membership at that time. In October 2008 he became permanent by way of a contract of indefinite duration and was entered into the Model Pension Scheme retrospectively from February 2005.
2. It is not possible for the Worker to be entered into the Master Pension Scheme as it is already closed under Statutory Instrument No. 493 of 2009. There can be no circumstances whereby any Worker can be entered into the scheme.
This case is before the Court under the Industrial Relations Acts 1946 to 2012. It must, therefore, be dealt with by applications of the normal standards of good employment practice rather than by reference to what the legal rights and obligations of the parties may have been when the Claimant commenced temporary employment with the College.
While the College may have been legally obliged in 2004 to enter the Claimant, as a fixed-term employee, in the same pension scheme as comparable permanent employees the fact remains that he was not entered in that scheme for the reasons that were explained to the Court. That scheme has long since closed and it is plainly impossible to enter him at this stage. On that account it would be an exercise in futility for the Court to recommend that he be now covered by the Master Scheme.
It appears that the differences between the Model Scheme and the Master Scheme may not be significant. However the extent and practical effect of these differences have not been fully explained to the Claimant.
The Court recommends that the College now provide the Claimant with a comprehensive analysis of the difference between both schemes in terms of the benefits accruing and the costs to members. Furthermore, having regard to all the circumstances of this case the Court further recommends that the arrears of employee contributions in respect of the period during which the Claimant was not entered in a pension scheme (€1,587.07) be paid on his behalf by the College
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
23rd August, 2013______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to John Foley, Court Secretary.