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Glanbia retirees launch court action over alleged breach of contract

The group has launched a High Court action over an alleged breach of contract regarding pension payments.

Image: Mark Stedman/Photocall

A GROUP OF Glanbia pensioners has launched a High Court action against the company over an alleged breach of contract.

The retirees say that Glanbia is contractually obliged to provide an annual 3.5 per cent increase in pension payments under an agreement regarding pay and benefits agreed in the early 1990s.

The company paid the pension increase for several years until, at the beginning of 2012, it called the deal off and discontinued the payment.

The 40-strong group of former employees, which includes former management and technical personnel, say they sacrificed salary and benefit increases in 1992 in return for an annual increase in their pensions once they retired.

The pensioners say that other elements of the 1992 agreement – outside of the annual pension increase – continue to be honoured.

A spokesman for the pensioners said: “We are particularly disappointed at the failure of Glanbia senior executives to honour our contract on the pension annual increase as we were the only group of employees who responded to the appeal from the then managing director for pay restraint in the early nineties, when the company was experiencing serious financial difficulties.”

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“We agreed to accept lower salaries at the time, to ameliorate the company’s financial problems, in return for the security of better pension conditions on our retirement,” he added.

The claimants say Glanbia’s actions will inflict very serious losses on the pensioners, aged 72 years old on average, which will be compounded on an annual basis.

The group added that for some staff members who are currently retiring, the accumulated value of their subscription to the company through sacrificing wage increases since 1992 would could amount to a considerable sum of money.

Read: Glanbia dispute: Retirees threaten legal action>

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