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Want your employee to retire, but have no agreed retirement age in place? Here's what to do...

by , 06 June 2013
If you want your employee over the age of 65 to retire, but have no agreed retirement age in place, there's a legal way to make sure he retires. Read on to find out how to deal with this retirement dilemma the legal way...

Did you know there's no legal age for retirement?

That's right. 'There's no legal requirement that stipulates retirement age. But it's generally accepted that 60 or 65 is an acceptable age to retire,' says The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service.

As a result of this, one of the situations you could face when it comes to retirement is wanting your employee to retire, but having no agreed retirement age in place to enforce it.

Luckily, there's a solution you can use to deal with this situation in a legal manner.

Here's what to do if you have no agreed retirement age in place and want your ageing employee to retire

'If you don't have an agreed retirement age, put one in place as soon as possible,' advises the Loose Leaf. Establish what the 'normal' age of retirement is for people in your industry.

You can do this by contacting other employers in your industry, or a body regulating your industry like a bargaining council. Then, establish what the 'normal' retirement age is for employees in the same capacity as your employee in question.

For example, the normal age for the Diamond Cutting Industry is 65, while the normal retirement age for the Building Industry is 60.

Once you've worked out the 'normal' retirement age for your industry, implement the following:

  • Inform your employees you're going to introduce a 'normal' retirement age and ask for their input;
  • Listen empathically to any suggestions or concerns they might have and provide good reasons if you can't accommodate them;
  • Issue a notice to all affected staff, making them aware of the retirement age;
  • Remind employees close to retirement age well in advance of the date, so it doesn't come as a surprise to them later on.
  • Create a paper trail early on and keep record of the different organisations you contacted to establish the 'normal' retirement age. Also keep record of your consultations. This'll help you prove your case should the termination be challenged.

Knowing what to do when you want your employee to retire, but have no agreement in place, will ensure you handle the situation in a legal manner.



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