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Employment tribunal finds MoJ discriminated against judges

London Central Employment Tribunal upholds the claims of over 200 judges for unlawful age, race and sex discrimination and equal pay

Posted on 16 January 2017

London Central Employment Tribunal has today upheld the claims of over 200 judges for unlawful age, race and sex discrimination and equal pay against the Lord Chancellor and the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) in relation to changes made to their pension entitlements.  

The judgment from the Tribunal held that the MoJ and the Lord Chancellor had discriminated against younger judges by requiring them to leave the Judicial Pension Scheme in April 2015 whilst allowing older judges to remain in that Scheme, and that this discrimination could not be justified. 

Shubha Banerjee from the employment team at Leigh Day who is representing 204 of the judges said:

“This is a great victory for our clients, many of whom sit alongside older judges who were appointed some years after them but who are, in effect, paid more purely because they are older.

“The fact that there is a significant number of female and BME judges in the younger group simply compounds the unfairness of the changes that were made to judicial pensions.

”According to Judicial Office Statistics, about one third of all judges in England and Wales last year were female, and only 7% described themselves as from a black or other minority ethnic background.”

The Tribunal found that the changes caused younger judges to suffer a disproportionate loss to their pensions purely because they were younger. 

The decision could have ramifications for other public sector groups, such as police officers, teachers, firefighters and prison officers, who have been subjected to similar negative changes to their pensions.  

The legal team were Shubha Banerjee and Chris Benson from Leigh Day and Andrew Short QC and Naomi Ling from Outer Temple Chambers.