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Women lose Court of Appeal challenge over state pension age rise

Women lose Court of Appeal challenge over state pension age rise

Two women have lost their Court of Appeal challenge against the Government's changes to the state pension age.

Nearly four million women born in the 1950s have been affected by changes which have raised the state pension age from 60 (which it sat at in 2010) to as high as 66, and many claim the alterations are unfair because they were not given enough time to prepare for years without a state pension.

Two women – Julie Delve, 62, and Karen Glynn, 63, – took the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to the High Court last year, arguing that raising their pension age "unlawfully discriminated against them on the grounds of age, sex, and age and sex combined". They were supported by the Backto60 group.

The pair lost that case, and subsequently appealed. However, in a judgment published today by the Court of Appeal, Master of the Rolls Sir Terence Etherton, Lord Justice Underhill and Lady Justice Rose unanimously dismissed the women's claim.

Joanne Welch said the Backto60 group's legal team is "actively looking" at taking the case to the Supreme Court. 

See our State Pension guide to find out what you're entitled to.

What did the court decide?

The court found that introducing the same state pension age for men and women did not amount to unlawful discrimination under EU or human rights laws.

As part of their ruling, the senior justices said: "Despite the sympathy that we, like the members of the Divisional Court (High Court), feel for the appellants and other women in their position, we are satisfied that this is not a case where the court can interfere with the decisions taken through the parliamentary process".

They said that "in the light of the extensive evidence" put forward by the Government, they agreed with the High Court's assessment that "it is impossible to say that the Government's decision to strike the balance where it did between the need to put state pension provision on a sustainable footing and the recognition of the hardship that could result for those affected by the changes was manifestly without reasonable foundation".

Additional reporting by the Press Association.