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Personal Injury allowance scheme

Policy

1.   Policy Statement

Harrow Council recognises that it has a responsibility towards its employees and at its discretion may compensate employees who experience physical, mental or financial detriment as a direct consequence of their employment with the Council.

The Local Government (Discretionary Payments) (Injury Allowances) Regulations 2011 scheme, which came into effect on 16 January 2012, gives  local authorities limited power to establish a discretionary injury benefits scheme.

2.   Purpose

This policy and procedure provides a framework for considering claims or other considerations for payment of an allowance to employees who suffer a personal injury (physical or mental) or contract a disease, in the actual discharge of their duties and as a consequence suffer a reduction in their salary, or the employee ceases to be employed in that employment as a result of an incapacity which is likely to be permanent and was caused by the injury or disease.  

Harrow Council will make the final decision whether an employee or other potential beneficiary is eligible to benefit from this scheme.

3.   Scope

This scheme is applicable to all Council employees who are members of the LGPS pension scheme.

4.   Definitions

An ‘eligible employee’ is defined as an employee who sustains an injury or contracts a disease solely, or predominantly, as a result of anything they were required to do in carrying out their work.

A ‘beneficiary’ is a person receiving an allowance under the terms of this Scheme and includes employees, former employees, spouses, civil partners, dependants or nominated co-habiting partners.

5.   General interpretations

For the purposes of the Regulations, if a person:

(a)     sustains an injury while travelling by vehicle to or from his or her place of work with his or her employer’s permission (whether express or implied) in connection with work related business; and

(b)     at the time of the injury the vehicle was being operated (otherwise than in the course of a public transport service) by or on behalf of, or under arrangements made by the person’s employer, the person shall be treated as having sustained the injury in the course of carrying out his or her work.

6.   Procedure

Payment requires approval by the responsible director.

7.   Reduction in remuneration

If employee sustains an injury or contracts a disease, and suffers a reduction in his or her pay whilst remaining employed, they may be entitled to an allowance while the reduction in pay continues.

Harrow Council will from time to time determine whether the person continues to be entitled to an allowance.

The allowance payable will be difference between employee’s reduced pay and normal pay.  National Insurance deductions to be made from the allowance but it will not be regarded as pensionable pay.

8.   Loss of employment  

Harrow Council may pay an allowance to an employee who ceases to be employed as a result of an incapacity which is likely to be permanent and caused by the injury or disease.

The Council may consider payment of an annual allowance not exceeding 85% of their annual salary, (at the point their employment ceased, plus any subsequent backdated pay award).

Where an employee’s pay fluctuated, their annual pay will be determined by calculating an average over a representative period. Account will also be taken of the annual benefit in kind to be included in the calculation.

Harrow Council will from time to time conduct a review and determine whether the person continues to be entitled to an allowance.

9.   Death benefits             

If in the course of carrying out their work, an employee sustains an injury, or contracts a disease, and the employee dies, leaving a surviving

a)    spouse

b)    civil partner

c)    nominated cohabiting partner*, or

d)    dependant

such persons may be entitled to an annual allowance or lump sum paid by Harrow Council:

  • providing that, at the date of the death, the spouse or civil partner is not cohabiting with another person outside the marriage or civil partnership;

The allowance to the surviving spouse or civil partner will cease if they marry or register a subsequent civil partnership or cohabits with another person outside the marriage or civil partnership.

Where the surviving spouse or civil partner marries or forms a civil partnership or cohabits with an individual in receipt of allowance under this regulation, only one of them will receive the allowance (they can choose who).

*Nominated cohabiting partner” means a person nominated by a member in accordance with the terms of the regulations.

10.   Certification of injury or disease

Before making a determination for payment of an allowance, the Council will obtain a certificate from an independent registered medical practitioner (“IRMP”) qualified in occupational health medicine, as to whether in his or her opinion the employee has for the purposes of the Regulations:

(a)       sustained an injury or contracted a disease in the course of carrying out his or her work; or  

(b)       continues to suffer from the injury or disease; or  

(c)        ceases to be employed as a result of an incapacity which is likely to be permanent and was caused by the injury or disease; or continues to suffer from the injury or disease.


11.  
Considerations in determining amounts of benefits

Harrow Council will take into account, when determining any allowance, whether the employee or ex-employee has:  

  • Any right to benefits under Part V of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992;
  • Any other statutory right to benefit or compensation
  • Any right to receive pension benefit (whether payable under an enactnment or otherwise)
  • Any damages recovered and any sum received by virtue of a contract of insurance
  • In determining the amount of an allowance or a lump sum, the Council will have due regard to all the circumstances of the case, including:
  • the degree of injury sustained, or the severity of disease contracted as assessed by an IRMP for the purposes of the certificate
  • any right to benefit under Part 5 (benefits for industrial injuries) of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992(1)
  • any other statutory right to benefit or compensation;
  • any right to receive pension benefit (whether payable under an enactment or otherwise); and
  • any damages recovered and any sum received by virtue of a contract of insurance.

In the case of an allowance which is payable by virtue of a person having sustained an injury, no regard shall be had-

  • to any benefit payable periodically which the person was entitled to be paid before the injury was sustained;
  • to any right which accrued before that time; or 
  • to any damages or sum received by virtue of such a right.

12.   Allowances for pensioners

Where a person ceases to be employed, an allowance may be payable under this scheme for such time as Harrow Council determines, to raise his or her LGPS pension to the level it would otherwise have been if he or she had not received the injury.

An allowance may be payable if the individual is, immediately prior to ceasing employment with Harrow Council, in receipt of an allowance (as a result of reduced pay or loss of employment with Harrow Council)  resulting from their injury.

13.   Conditions

(i)      Investigation of any request for payment of an allowance

          The Council’s Occupational Health Service will be required to certify the employee’s injury or disease, before the employee can receive a permanent or temporary personal injury allowance.

(ii)     Relevant employment

           Relevant employment is employment with a LGPS employer (or the predecessor of such an employer), or if the person is entitled to participate in the benefits of the pension fund.

           Relevant employment excludes any period as a Councillor Member, Mayor of London or member of London Assembly which is treated as employment for the purposes of LGPS regulations.

(iii)     Relevant employer

Harrow Council is the relevant employer if:

a)     the person in question was employed immediately before they first qualified for any allowance or  

b)     (s)he dies without qualifying for any such allowance and his last employer before his death in relevant employment, was Harrow Council;

c)      the employer (as specified 1 above) has ceased to exist, and Harrow Council is the employer to whom he would have been transferred if he had continued in the employment in question  

(iv)     Relevant Injury  

          There will be no entitlement where an award is made in respect of the injury or disease under Section 26 of the Fire Services Act 1947 or Section 35 of the Police Act 1947.

14.   Review of payments made  

Harrow Council will from time to time conduct a review and determine whether the individual continues to be entitled to an allowance.  

Any failure on the part of a beneficiary to either co-operate in the review or to provide full, honest and accurate information within a reasonable period to the satisfaction of Harrow Council will result in an immediate suspension, reduction or forfeiture of allowance(s) under this Scheme.  This is at the absolute discretion of Harrow Council.  

15.   Right of Appeal 

Beneficiaries unhappy with the allowance payable under this procedure, have a right to appeal against the decision.  

Appeals will be heard by a Corporate Director and there is no further right of appeal.