towards the legal age of 64?

PENSION REFORM. The Prime Minister should unveil the outline of pension reforms on Tuesday.

[Mise à jour du lundi 09 janvier 2023 à 14h04] The contours of pension reform will finally be revealed. After weeks of lengthy discussions with social partners and representatives of political groups, the Prime Minister must present his project this Tuesday, January 10, starting at 17.30 after questions to the government in the National Assembly. But what does the pension reform contain? The executive has announced its intention to push back the official retirement age, which is now set at 62. The initial ambition of the government is to gradually being pushed back to reach 65 in 2031. To achieve this, this age must be shifted by 4 months each year starting next summer. “65 years is not a totem”, however Elisabeth Borne pointed out on the France Info microphone last week. Other avenues are being considered, such as raising the legal age to 64, conditional on a gradual extension of the contribution period. Obviously, in this case, you’d have to work 43 years to receive your full pension. According to information from business daily Les Echos, raising the legal age to 64 would ultimately be preferred.

In an interview with the Journal du Dimanche, the new boss of the Les Républicains party said he supports this option, with a shift to 63 years in 2027, then to 64 in 2032. As well as questions about the legal age of retirement, the executive has announced its intention to raise minimum retirement pension for a full career of 85% of the minimum wage. It remains to be seen whether this measure only applies to new retirees. On the matter of difficulty, theown establishment of a professional wear prevention fund for identified trades difficult to enumerate. To promote senior jobs, executive plans to apply artworks index on senior employment in companies with more than 50 employees. Finally, he wanted to allow a better access to gradual and combined employment and retirement pensions.

If the pension reform has not been formally passed, it is already the subject of strong opposition. Unions reject the legal retirement age delay. They have promised to mobilize if this action is confirmed. “The French are more reasonable than certain trade unions and political leaders. Nobody wants a blockade”, reacted Olivier Dussopt in an interview with the daily Le Parisien, adding that “we must not think of people as fools. The French understand exactly what we have to do “.

The pension reform will then be presented to the Council of Ministers on January 23 examined in the National Assembly in early February. As a reminder, executives want this project to be implemented from late summer 2023. Regarding the form, the government has not yet decided how. LHowever, the executive has tended to adopt the text by integrating it into the amended Social Security Financing Bill (PLFSSR).. The advantage of this solution is that it can use article 49.3 of the Constitution (which allows laws to be passed without a parliamentary vote).

Who will not be affected by pension reform?

Pension reform does not concern current pensioners. The latter retires at the age of 62 as stipulated by law. If the text is indeed adopted by the summer of 2023, as planned by the executive, then persons born between 1 July and 1 December 1961 will be the first to be affected by the postponement of the legal retirement age. Concretely, to increase the retirement age gradually, the executive wants to increase the minimum working time by 4 months per year.

Who will be affected by the new pension reform?

  • For generation 1961retirement age will be 62 years 4 months.
  • For generation 1962retirement age will be 62 years 8 months.
  • For generation 1963retirement age will be 63 years old, in 2025.
  • For generation 1964retirement age will be 63 years 4 months.
  • For 1965 generationretirement age will be 63 years 8 months.
  • For generation 1966retirement age will be 64 years.
  • For generation 1967retirement age will be 64 years 4 months.
  • For generation 1968retirement age will be 64 years 8 months.
  • For generation 1969 and afterretirement age will be 65 years.

This measure aims in particular to extend the average duration of employee contributions. With this reform the executive is trying to reduce the cost of the pension system which, under current conditions, is an expense of 332 billion euros annually, or 14.5% of GDP, according to the Retirement Guidance Council. Note that the reform initiated by the government provides for an exemption from delaying the retirement age for workers who have had long careers or who have worked in jobs that have been described as difficult.

Will pension reform end the special scheme?

This fall, the executive and social partners have been working on a special regime issue. As a reminder, France currently has 37 pension schemes (general scheme, supplement, special scheme). Among them, there are 15 special diets. Of the 16.9 million pensioners in France, around 4.2 million benefit from these special features, according to the Research, Study, Evaluation and Statistics Department (DREES). These include farmers, soldiers, civil servants, self-employed, liberal professions… Depending on the specific scheme, affiliates enjoy certain advantages due to the difficult nature of their professions. In particular, they can retire earlier, contribute less than workers in the general scheme, and receive a higher retirement pension.

From 2019, the government has announced its intention to abolish the special scheme in order to achieve the creation of a universal points-based pension system, where each euro contribution provides access to equal rights for everyone, regardless of profession practiced. This statement has caused an outcry among the special scheme contributors. From now on executive plans to introduce “grandfather clause”. In other words, it is cover, from 2025, access to a special pension scheme for new employees entering related professions until there. Thus, the oldest will retain the special scheme they have contributed to over the years, while newcomers are not entitled to it. Only employees who, in 2020, are less than 17 years from retirement will pass the universal scheme and will remain tied to their particular scheme.

Insured persons will not be affiliated with the new universal scheme and will retain their benefits in relation to the specific scheme if they were born before:

  • On January 1, 1975, for most special diets.
  • On January 1, 1977, for employees of the Port of Strasbourg
  • On January 1, 1980, for employees of SNCF, RATP, IEG, Banque de France, choirs and certain personnel of the Paris Opera, Comédie Française and State workers.
  • On January 1, 1982, for miners and drillers.

On the other hand, the executive has promised, through the voice of Labor Minister Olivier Dussopt, not to touch certain special regimes, such as the sailors, longshoremen and dancers of the Paris Opera.

Towards a better consideration of difficulty?

Cashiers, industrial or construction workers, cleaners, domestic helpers, janitors, nurses… In the private sector as in the public service, many professions are subject to difficult working conditions. In his reforms, the government said it wanted to take more into account the hardships at work to allow professionals to retire before the legal age.

With C2P (professional prevention account) Current legislation allows employees to accumulate points according to their exposure 6 difficulty criteria: night work, alternating shifts, hyperbaric environment (underwater), repetitive motion or exposure to noise and extreme temperatures (cold or hot). If they meet one or more of these difficulty criteria employees earn points and can spend them on training, working part time, or retiring early.

It is possible to accumulate up to 8 points in a year, and 10 points are required to advance your retirement by a quarter. However, it is impossible to accumulate more than 100 points in a career, especially since the first 20 points must be dedicated to training. Therefore, a maximum of 80 points can be used to leave early, which only represents 8 quarters, i.e. two years of earned retirement. Until now, only 9,596 people can use C2P to anticipate their retirement, according to data from the Ministry of Manpower. Therefore, the system benefits very few workers.

To expand the effectiveness of C2P, the government wants to add three other occupational risk criteria: painful posture, carrying heavy loads, and mechanical vibration.

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