The Parliamentary Ombudsman has ruled that the Government (of the day) was too slow in advising many women of the changes to state pension age resulting in financial hardship and many women being ill-prepared for not drawing state pensions at age 60.
The Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI) have campaigned for many years for reinstating their state pension from age 60 but the Parliamentary Ombudsman has no power to force the Government to change the law or refund missed state pension payments from Age 60.
It is estimated that up to 3.5 million women born in the early 1950s have been affected and whilst the Ombudsman cannot force a refund as the state pension age is law, they can award compensation to be paid for by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) who, the Ombudsman ruled that they should have given notice to women affected at least 28 months earlier than they did.
This is a real tough one. Equality is thrown out of the window – men still had to wait until 65, then 66 and now 67, with women bought into line but we get that many women were not made aware in time. In fact, we did a study nearly 20 years with the results that 90% of women were not aware of the changes which went public across national news papers around the World, even as far as Sydney, Australia and still the DWP did not act.