Ernst_Young

Document Sample
Ernst_Young Powered By Docstoc
					   COMING OF AGE: CONSULTATION ON THE DRAFT
EMPLOYMENT EQUALITY (COMING OF AGE) REGULATIONS
                      2006


          Response by Ernst & Young LLP


                  17 October 2005
COMING OF AGE: CONSULTATION ON THE DRAFT
EMPLOYMENT EQUALITY (COMING OF AGE) REGULATIONS
2006

This response is made by the UK firm of Ernst & Young LLP, a limited liability partnership
incorporated under English Law with registered number OC300001. Our registered office and
principle place of business is at 1 More London Place, London SE1 2AF.


We would like to make the following submissions in respect of the draft Employment Equality
(Age) Regulations 2006 (the “Age Regulations”):
     1. We should be grateful if the Department of Trade and Industry (the “DTI”) could
        clarify whether it is intended that partners in a partnership such as ours should acquire
        rights under the Age Regulations. The submissions below are made on the assumption
        that it is intended that partners fall within the permitted relief provided for in the Age
        Regulations.
     2. We submit that the relationship between an employer and an employee is quite
        different to the relationship between a partnership and a partner. There are two
        specific circumstances (set out in sub-paragraph (a) and (b) below) in which we
        believe that it is inappropriate to seek to approach the relationship between a
        partnership and a partner in the same ways as the Age Regulations approach the
        relationship between an employer and an employee. These are as follows:-
        (a) Retirement Age: The Age Regulations seek to introduce a default retirement age of
            65. This requirement will give rise to significant practical difficulties for many
            partnerships which, have agreed (by consensus and as a matter of contract) to
            provide for mandatory retirement of all of its partners at a retirement age below the
            default age of 65. Partners in partnership constitute business owners so that, in
            addition to working for the partnership, they have an interest in the partnership
            itself. We submit that the unique corporate structure of a partnership means that
            partners should not be treated as employees for the purposes of the retirement
            provisions in the Age Regulations. Rather, we submit that as business owners, it
            should be for partners to determine when they, as partners retire.
        b) Specific Age Related Benefits: Similarly, we submit that partners, in their capacity
           as business owners, should be able to determine other arrangements which
           partnerships might put in place, where such arrangements make reference to age as
           a qualifying characteristic. For example, many partnerships have preserved benefits
           entered into by contract perhaps over many years which have an age dimension to
           them. Such benefits may have similarities to pension schemes for employees, but
           would not fall within the occupational pension schemes exemption in the Age
           Regulations. Removing such preserved benefits will require a considerable degree
           of adjustment and re-negotiation with those partners who are entitled, by contract,
           to such benefits.
     3. In light of the submissions made in paragraph 2 above, we would ask the DTI to
        consider the impact of the proposed Age Regulations on partnerships, given their
        unique corporate structure.




                                                2
4. We would also like to draw attention to the apparent lack of transitional arrangements
   in the Age Regulations. It appears to us that many businesses such as ours will, on 1
   October 2006, find themselves in the position of having to agree arrangements with
   many partners (and employees as a separate group) concerning various rights and
   entitlements which have accrued as at the date upon which the proposed Age
   Regulations come into force (1 October 2006). We would welcome provisions in the
   Age Regulations or other guidance from the DTI in relation to how businesses such as
   ours can best move from our existing policies and procedures (to being fully
   compliant with the Age Regulations with the minimum amount of business disruption
   and, moreover without causing undue damage to partner/partnership relations and
   employee/employer relations within our organisation.




                                        3

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Tags:
Stats:
views:4
posted:8/26/2012
language:Unknown
pages:3