Row erupts over Aer Lin­gus pen­sion pot

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Business & Appointments - - FRONT PAGE - Fearghal O’con­nor

A MA­JOR row has bro­ken out at Dublin Air­port over a spe­cial pot of pen­sion money that is be­ing shared out among Aer Lin­gus work­ers.

About 2,300 staff will re­ceive their share of a €100m-plus pen­sion pot, known as Pot B, which is now be­ing wound up.

Staff will re­ceive on av­er­age €40,000 each from the spe­cial sup­ple­men­tary pen­sion. It was es­tab­lished eight years ago with a €34m Ex­che­quer pay­ment to com­pen­sate work­ers for the Aer Lin­gus flota­tion and to prop up its then ail­ing de­fined ben­e­fit pen­sion fund.

Pot B’s in­vest­ment per­for­mance has been strong — up €14m in 2015 alone — leav­ing mem­bers with a big re­turn on their 2pc of salary con­tri­bu­tions over the last eight years, fur­ther boosted by a 4pc con­tri­bu­tion from Aer Lin­gus. Each worker’s to­tal share is now to be trans­ferred into their new de­fined-con­tri­bu­tion schemes.

But huge dis­crep­an­cies have emerged in what each mem­ber will ac­tu­ally re­ceive af­ter trustee Ir­ish Pen­sions Trust wrote to mem­bers last week de­tail­ing amounts. This news­pa­per has seen nu­mer­ous ex­am­ples of let­ters to in­di­vid­u­als that show huge dif­fer­ences — even be­tween in­di­vid­u­als with very sim­i­lar age and ser­vice pro­files.

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