Please provide some guidelines on current retirement legislation as regards employment contracts

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A NI on 5 July 2016
Chris Fullerton
Arthur Cox NI
Issues covered:

The law on retirement has changed considerably in recent years. Although compulsory retirement clauses were once common features in contracts of employment, their current use is rare following the abolition of the default retirement age. Compulsory retirement is now also potentially unlawful age discrimination, and should only be used where the employer can objectively justify it as a “proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim”.  This will require you to show that:

  • It is intended to meet a legitimate aim.
  • Having the particular retirement age meets that aim.
  • It is proportionate to use that retirement age as a means of meeting that aim.

Case law has shown that a legitimate aim

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Back to Q&A's This article is correct at 05/07/2016

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Chris Fullerton
Arthur Cox NI

The main content of this article was provided by Chris Fullerton. Contact telephone number is 028 9023 0007 or email

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