Resolving pension issues in TUPE transfers

Our client approached us following their acquisition of an insolvent organisation. The insolvent organisation had historically taken on a number of civil service employees under a TUPE transfer. The government department involved had given the insolvent organisation an indemnity in respect of generous redundancy and early pension provisions which its employees were entitled to under civil service rules. This indemnity was novated to our client on acquisition of the insolvent organisation.

Following the acquisition, our client made several of these employees redundant as part of a restructure and called upon the indemnity. The government department involved argued that the generous redundancy and early pension rights were non-contractual and no longer applied, so nothing was due under the indemnity.

Nick Hobden provided detailed advice on technical TUPE issues and the evidence required, while provided ‘on the ground’ assistance at the client’s offices to identify former employees to be used as test cases to build up the body of evidence required. Nick Hobden presented the client’s case to the government department and the Government Legal Department at a joint meeting, successfully demonstrating that the client’s approach to the former employees’ rights was correct.

Nick successfully secured approval from the government department, the Cabinet Office and HM Treasury for drawdowns against the indemnity, securing well over £270k for our client. Nick was also able to obtain confirmation that all subsequent cases would be dealt with similarly, avoiding future dispute and costs.

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