Pension schemes given more time to consider RPI/CPIH legal challenge

The trustees of three major companies’ pension schemes have been granted more time to consider applying for a judicial review of the decision to align the Retail Prices Index (RPI) with the Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH).

Pension trustees from the BT Pension Scheme, Ford Pension Schemes, and Marks and Spencer Pension Scheme issued a joint application to the court for the six-week deadline extension.

In November 2020, the government revealed its plans to align the inflation measures in February 2030.

Anyone wishing to launch a legal challenge against the decision had three months to do so, with the deadline expiring today (24 February).

Due to the complex nature of the case, the government needs time to prepare its defence and therefore asked the scheme trustees to request a six-week extension before bringing any claim for a judicial review.

The schemes believe that the inflation reform could result in a lower retirement income for final salary pensioners, particularly for women as they live longer.

They also said that it may impact the value of RPI-linked assets that pension schemes hold to earn pensioners’ retirement payments.

The trustees are yet to decide whether to file a claim against the government and now have until 7 April 2020 to do so.

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