Forum

Advice on Retiring through Ill Health

Hiya

Hope everyone is having a lovely easter with lots of lovely choccie!!!

I’m after a bit of advice. I have been really struggling with my symptoms at work over the past 6mths and am thinking of applying to retire through ill health. I am 55.

I have had lots of adaptations done to help me work and I have reduced my hours to try and carry on but I am still suffering badly.

Just wondered how many others on this brilliant site have gone down this road.

Thanks for any help you can offer.

Shazzie xx

Hi Sharron,

I took Early Retirement Due to Ill Health (ERDIH) when I was 49 some 12 years ago.

I attended work; I won’t say work; for 26 years mostly in a wheelchair but there comes a time when you realise the best thing for you is to retire. In your heart you don’t want to but for you it will be the best thing. I can quite honestly say it’s brilliant; health wise never felt better.

Being that your employers have already put ‘reasonable adjustments’ in place to help you I’m sure you could apply now but it would mean going sick now. I’ve never heard of someone getting ERDIH while working.

You will want all facts and figures that depend on how long you have been working and what ERDIH clause are in your Contract of Employment.

It will mean an immediate pension; some you may commute into a lump sum.

If you need help with any forms or understanding legal jargon contact http://www.pensionsadvisoryservice.org.uk/ that is a free government run organisation for this purpose.

Good luck

George

Hi Sharon,

I to retired earlier than I really wanted to because of ill health. I don’t regret one minute of it, the pressure of getting up, getting ready, putting a happy smile on my face. It’s so lovely to be able to do what you want when you feel you can,and not have to smile when it’s the last thing you want to do. Not only that you can have a rest when you feel like it.

I wish you the very best with your decision.

Janet x

Hiya

Thanks eversomuch for your helpful reply. It’s nice to know that there are people out there who understand what I am going through to make this decision. It really helps.

Take care.

Shazzie x

Thanks eversomuch Janet for your helpful reply. It has really helped as I am struggling to carry on working as I am. I know this is not doing me or my family any good.

Can you let me know if you get this reply Janet as I am still not confident as to whether I am doing this right.

Take care

Shazziex

Hiya,

I’m 37, working part-time, not off sick - I have applied for Ill Health Retirement. HR referred me to OH - it’s them that will make the recommendation to the pension provider. I have my appt with OH at the end of this month. I’m still walking with a stick, but I’m incredibly tired all the time, and I’m fairly sure that my work is suffering as a result - I’m a secretary, so the work is fairly easy and non-physical, but I still find it too much. My walking has been particularly bad for the last 10 days, I might be having a relapse, but it won’t do any harm if OH see me like this - I’ve already decided that I’m only going to do this once and they WILL make that recommendation, so 27th April (when I go for my appt) is going to be a particularly bad day - there’s a bit of a hike to the clinic in the hospital where I have to go, so I’m not likely to need to do much exaggerating.

Good luck,

Luisa x

Hi Louisa

Thanks for replying. I know what you mean about the tiredness. I am a sec and I get really tired. I have been falling a lot too.

I’ve had a couple of appts with OH and they have been really helpful so try not to worry. They have always said to me that hey are there to help us. They have recommended lots of adaptations for me over the last few years which have been really helpful but now I have got much worse so I am going to apply for ill health retirement.

I really hope you get on ok on the 27th. I will be thinking of you.

Let me know how it goes.

Take care.

Shazzie xx

Hi Louisa

Thanks for replying. I know what you mean about the tiredness. I am a sec and I get really tired. I have been falling a lot too.

I’ve had a couple of appts with OH and they have been really helpful so try not to worry. They have always said to me that hey are there to help us. They have recommended lots of adaptations for me over the last few years which have been really helpful but now I have got much worse so I am going to apply for ill health retirement.

I really hope you get on ok on the 27th. I will be thinking of you.

Let me know how it goes.

Take care.

Shazzie xx

From the point of view of a negotation might it be better for your employer or OH to make the suggestion first if it is likely it could be prompted?

Hi, well if the rules haven`t changed with local authorities, this is sort of how it would go.

I did this in 2000.

You can`t decide to retire on ill health grounds yourself. You need to have been on the sick for 6 months. After that they will send you to see a doc of their choice, to decide if you are fit to return to the job you are already employed at.

They then report to your HM dept and youll be asked to attend an interview. There you will discuss what the docs report says and after that the HM will see if they have another position for you, if you are unfit to continue in the same job.

I wasn`t and they had no vacancies to suit my physical impairment. I was offered the choice of staying on the sick for 6 more months or leaving then. I chose the latter and the retirement package was a good and fair one.

It was the best thing for me.

Hope this is of some help to you.

Good luck.

luv Pollx

Hiya

Thanks for your reply.

My employer has already suggested it and I have my third appt with Occ Health and HR to discuss further. I was diagnosed nearly 8yrs ago so I have been in regular contact with them since the beginning.

I just wondered how many others have been forced to go down this road. I am fighting it to be honest but know it will be inevitable in the end.

Thanks again for your reply. I really appreciate it.

Take care.

Shazzie x

Hi Poll

Thanks for your reply. I really appreciate it.

Got a few appts set up to discuss further so will just take in all the info and decide what is best for me at the end of the day.

I am glad things worked out for you and that you are happy.

Take care and thanks again.

Shazzie xx

I’ve had ill health retirement recommended by OH. But I had been trying to fight it, hoping that Tysabri would be my saving grace. Unfortunately because I’ve been off sick for 6 months now disciplinary proceedings have been started too, so I think that next time I have a meeting I am going to go for the ill health retirement. I think it might lighten the load. The thing that worries me is that although occ health doc suggests retirement they get reports from GP and consultant neuro and I already know that my disability score looks good on paper! But it really doesn’t take into account the all encompassing fatigue. Today I’ve met up with some friends at a soft play centre. Met them at 11, had lunch about half 12. Once we had lunch I had my head on the table fighting tiredness and I couldn’t find my way out when I eventually gave in (friends suggested I curled up on one of the sofas but I hate to show weakness) and decided to come home!

I think that being given permission to give in and give up work then I might stop stressing about it and have a few more ounces of energy for me.

Hi Sharron

I too was under the impression that ill-health retirement wasn’t something you applied for but rather something that an employer would suggest to an employee if that employee had a lot of time off.

The important thing is to do what you think is right for you, it may be you can get an enhancement on the number of years service.

And remember your employers are just that, they are not your friends.

Exactly the same as I feel. I am really fighting it but am really struggling.

Like you I try and carry on but sometimes it is impossible.

I also don’t think that early retirement will be an easy option as it seems as if there are going to be a lot of hurdles. Got to decide whether I’ve got the strength to bother but then again if you have been paying in for as long as I have why shouldn’t we consider it if advised.

Take care of yoursel and thanks again…

Shazziex

Hadn’t thought of it that way Stenovski. Very good point.

Thanks for your reply. Very interesting comment.

Shazzie x

Sickness and disciplinary are - or should be - two completely different procedures.

Being long-term sick, for verifiable reasons, isn’t, and never should be, “disciplinary”.

It might be subject to the Capability Procedure, which looks at whether it’s feasible for you still to do your job - or any job! But this should be quite distinct from any disciplinary procedure.

Disciplinary would only be appropriate if, say, you’d consistently failed to produce medical evidence, making your reasons for absence look dubious.

Tina

It is on capabilty issues but still goes through the same disciplinary process. Which is massively stressful. I have got union support but at present my manager is on holiday, HR person dealing with the case is about to leave and Union person is on paternity leave. At the start of the process I was scared of taking ill health retirement and closing the door on my options to work. My boss and my partner were very against me doing this (I’m only 37) so I have been trying to do what everyone else wants as I don’t like letting people down. But I can’t continue letting my work colleagues down every day (well 2 days a week but I’m sure you know what I mean). I have suggested alternate hours but they won’t cut my hours down any more as trust policy is all staff work 16 hours or more.

I know exactly what you mean ggmarch. I have been fighting this for about 3yrs now and have had adaptations fitted in the workplace to delay the decision but I think you know when the time comes.

You take care of yourself and think of what will be best for you and your family. That is what I am doing. It isn’t going to be easy though I realise that. Only you will know what you need to do to make life easier for you (same as me).

Take care and I hope you find an answer and get all the support you need…

Shazziex

Hello,

I was a freelance computer consultant. Suddenly realised that I could no loner haul myself, mobility scooter and luggage around Europe or UK any longer. Also got fed-up going to interviews for new contracts and being looked at as a liability. So took decision to stop work as a computer consultanmt in Jan 2012. I have now setup my own website, www.aid4disabled.com, & this keeps me very busy but working from home. Having an objective each day is important, I also play bridge, any hobby is essential, so try blogging with a blog website

It is a very big decision to take but once decided and new life in place then I have no regrets, I’m much more relaxed and content.

Good luck and try to enjoy it

Cheers

Patrick