An Advocate General of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has recommended it find in favour of a gay Trinity lecturer who was the victim of pension discrimination due to his sexual orientation.
Former Trinity College lecturer David Parris’ case centres on the fact that he was unable to transfer his pension to his partner in the event of his death, as he was over 60 years old when the couple were civilly partnered in 2011, reports The Journal.ie.
In order for such a transfer to be made, the person in question must be under 60, a necessary requirement for all civil partnerships/ marriages.
As Parris was legally unable to enter into a legal partnership before turning 60 – since civil partnerships weren’t legal in Ireland until 2011, when Parris was already 65 – he argues that this requirement constituted discrimination.
Parris’ case was dismissed by the Equality Tribunal before being taken to the Labour Court, who referred it to the European Court of Justice.
Advocate General of the ECJ in Luxembourg, Juliane Kokott recommended that the court find that Parris was indeed discriminated against in terms of his sexual orientation by the college. Kokott is one of 11 Advocates General who are responsible for presenting a legal opinion on the cases assigned to them. Their findings are not legally-binding.
The European Court of Justice’s official ruling will be delivered next month.
This news comes as Pension Equality Ireland are urging LGB people to contact their pension advisors to ascertain if they can leave a survivor pension to spouses and civil partners.
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