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Ill-Health Early Retirement Claim

The following question was posted in Fibromyalgia Family Magazine

Dear Brian,

After an initial diagnosis of workplace stress and reactive depression, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. I researched this (still coming to terms with having fibro 100% of the time) and understand that fibro can be triggered as a result of being under sustained stress. I can’t do my job anymore due to the fogginess and cognitive difficulties, not to mention the fatigue. I applied for ill-health retirement from my profession, but was rejected last week, despite my consultation stating I was permanently unable to return to my former profession.

I hope to do some form of work of a less arduous nature in the future when (hopefully) my health picks up. Where do I go to now?

I need some income for the bills and can’t live on fresh air. My much loved profession, and my health have been taken from me, but I still have a pulse so I cannot receive a reduced pension. Life can be so unfair!



Dear James,

You say that the sustained stress you were under means you cannot do your job anymore due to fibro fog and cognitive difficulties as well as fatigue. You have applied for Ill-Health Retirement, but have been rejected. Your specialist says that you are permanently unable to return to your former profession.

I find it difficult to understand why your claim for ill-health has been rejected, particularly where your Consultant is supporting you. I feel that we would need some more information to be able to advise you properly on this. It may well be that you are entitled to an Ill-Health Early Retirement Pension and it just needs more pressure being brought to bear. We might be able to do that. Pension claims are difficult ones because it would have to be shown that the Trustees were acting perversely in rejecting the pension. That is a very high test, but still worth looking at.

Brian Barr


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