View more on these topics

This Week’s Dilemna

I have heard of the new legislation concerning age discrimination but I’m not 100% sure how it will affect my firm. We are a medium-sized company of 25 mortgage advisers. I understand that I cannot advertise for someone of a certain age when I’m recruiting and can’t dismiss someone on the basis of age but I’ve even heard of companies banning birthday cards in case they say the wrong thing. Surely this is taking things too far, or do we all need to go to these lengths to stay within the law??

I’ve discussed this dilemma with our human resources team. This legislation is designed to protect employees or potential employees from being treated less favourably because of their age. In financial services, as long as your qualifications are up-to-date and you give good advice there is no age limit for you to start or finish working.

Under the legislation employers cannot automatically assume that staff will retire at the age of 65. If they wish to work beyond retirement age and are capable of doing so the company has an obligation to consider their request.

There is a common misconception that this legislation is only aimed at older workers but this is not the case. It is designed to protect everyone of an employable age.

Banning birthday cards is probably a bit extreme but the point is that any reference to age in a negative or offensive manner could be taken the wrong way. As an employer you are responsible for the behaviour of your employees so it is important to make sure everyone is aware of the impact of discriminating on the basis of age.

The positive side is that it should make more employers aware of the fact that, with an ageing population and therefore workforce, there is a huge amount of experience and talent out there to draw on. Similarly, young people fresh from education need to be given the opportunity to start in the industry. Getting beyond the idea that someone’s ability is linked to their age is the key to a successful workforce.


CML urges the government to reform housing industry

The Council of Mortgage Lenders has urged the government to increase support for mortgage borrowers who fall into payment difficulties and renew its commitment to sustainable home-ownership.This it says would enhance the safety-net for home-buyers and minimize the numbers of arrears and repossessions.In its pre-Budget report, the CML points out that more than half the […]

BM Solutions defends choice of Hometrack for POS-O

BM Solutions has defended its decision to use Hometrack for the launch of its point-of-sale offer system despite parent HBOS having a 21.7% equity stake in rival automated valuation model provider Rightmove.The lender has launched its POS-O using Hometrack’s AVM, promising offers in 15 to 20 minutes. The service is available across new and remortgage […]

Spas seduce home buyers

Halifax has revealed that home buyers will pay more to live in a spa town. All 18 spa towns have higher average house prices than comparable towns in their regions, while 16 out of 18 have higher prices than neighbouring towns.

Rooftop threatened by securitisation downgrade

Rooftop Mortgages is facing another potential downgrade of its securitisation following Fitch Ratings putting out a negative ratings watch. This is the ratings agencys way of notifying the industry of its intent to take action, in this negative, which could result in a potential downgrade. Following Fitch issuing this sort of warning it typically takes […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up