It seems my FM may mean Medical Retirement - how do I find out what this could mean or whether its worth risking being fired?

My Union and I are fighting to keep me in work but for the past few years, two of them with FM, my attendance has got steadily worse. Work have done everything they have to in order to keep me working, and so have I, but I am one meeting away from a Stage 4 letter - the final warning, where it can be decided the length of time I have to prove myself - failing that my being fired! However, I don't know the best route to take should they make me an offer. How do I find out? I work as a teaching assistant and am paid by the local council. Someone has suggested Medical Retirement. Should I consider this? Who can I ask? And if I do end up unemployed where do I stand? Thanks for your help.

12 Replies

  • Hi,

    I don't know myself. I just had to stop working but I haven't claimed anything because I just can't bear the thought of dealing with all the hassle. I will say that stopping work was the best thing for me physically and emotionally but finance is a major issue now.



  • jilly, please begin the claims process. ask the cab or ageuk for help and email for the benefits info.

    also consider joining "benefits & work" for a small, one-off, payment they have lots of useful guides for pip & esa. (pm me for details)

    you may see "no-win, no fee" people, but they take up to 25% of your money so I, personally, would not advise using them.



  • Thanks Hamble. I will. I am going away for a few days but will PM you when I get back.



  • If you work for a local council you are entitled to be seen by their occupational health service, by law they have to have one. Ask your head teacher to refer you and if he/she won't contact the human resources dept of your council and ask them for a referral. It is the occupational health service who will determine if you are suitable for medical retirement. It isn't a quick process and is likely to involve a lot of appointments but it is well worth it in the long run. Your occupational health service can also assess your job remit and work place to see what, if any, reasonable adjustments can be made to help you remain employed. As for possibly ending up unempleyed, if you are a member of a union, ask them for advice re the whole health/retirement/occupational health service. If you are not a member of a union your best bet is citizens advice or your loacal benefits advice centre which, if you have one, will be run by the council, though they are not allowed to communicate with your employer without your permission, which is one less worry. There are other bodies that can give you advice, usually those who deal with disabilities, of which fibro is one, and you should be able to find them in your local phone book or ask at your local library.

    I am a teacher and have been going through the medical retirement process since November last year, with another 2 -3 months of waiting ahead. It doesn't usually take this long but all the delays that could happen, have happened to me including a GP taking 3 months to write a 2 page report and the only member of the HR team that deals with teachers either having been on leave or off sick since early April! It is very frustrating and worrying, but I am trying to remain hopeful for a positive, and quick, resolution. If you need any other advise feel free to message me, Linda.

  • Linda, lruk, has offered some good advice as someone going through the process you will be following.

    ask your gp and consultants for their support.

    you want to be medically retired, they have to follow disability guidelines, don't be pushed into resigning/



  • Hi Sarah-Jane

    I am so sorry to read that your situation still hasn't been resolved as of yet. I think that Lruk has offered you some excellent advice and it is worth following up on.

    I have pasted you a PDF file called 'retiring early due to ill health' from 'The Pensions Advisory Service' and I genuinely hope that you find it useful:

    I want to wish you all the best of luck

    Ken x

  • I am in a similar situation so I was interested in this discussion. Thankyou Ken for that link. Gonna read it now. Good luck Sarah-Jane x

  • Hi Sarah-Jane :)

    I'm sorry to hear that you may have to medically retire you must be feeling rather sad and a bit lost about it all. It's never easy making decisions related to whether to keep working or not, whether to leave a job and find something within our realm of abilities. One thing is for sure though! Whatever you decide or whatever happens it is a new chapter a new beginning so as to speak :)

    This link is from their helppage regarding 'What to do if you become disabled' I know that you already are but thought that their may be some useful links and information for you. :)

    This link is also from their Disability Benefits Centre where there is a list of contact details regarding differing benefits etc which I thought may be helpful :)

    May I also give you this link from the same site which gives you the Disability Rights Act information

    And sorry :o but another link from the same site with information and further links regarding Redundancies, dismissals and disciplinaries

    I hope that you can find something helpful from the links Sarah-Jane and hope it sorts out in your favour :)

    Remember there's always someone listening here if you need a chat or to let of steam, wishing you wellness and sending healing fluffies filled with sunshine smiles, please let us know how things go :)

    :) xxxsianxxx :)

  • Hi.i have only posted once before but find the site quite helpful although the occupational health physician told me not to read this as it puts too much doubt in my mind. I do not agree. I am also heading towards a stage 4 meeting with local council. Can I just asked how old people are that are considering medical retirement.

  • I am 54 (as of yesterday) and was retired from my job on medical grounds at the end of December. The process was remarkably quick. I had really struggled over last couple of years to hang onto my job, flexing start and finish times, reducing hours etc so HR and Occupational Health were already well aware of my health issues. Luckily for me I was in a pension scheme and their own Occupational Health agreed I met criteria for early retirement. I receive a small pension now, and I miss my job and colleagues but it's a huge weight off my shoulders now that if I am having a bad day/week I am not letting anybody down and can more easily pace myself. Hope you find a solution which will enable you enjoy a better quality of life.

  • Thanks everyone. I'm 53 and will have worked for 15 full years come 21 June 2014, but work messed up my pension some years ago and I failed to notice. Could blame the fact that too much was going on, but I should have kept my eyes on my payslip. Wish I had and understood it enough. But that cannot be undone now. Anyway, with everything going on and dismissal hanging over me for the past two years I've done nothing about it - which makes it even worse.

    Really depressed yesterday and not far from tears. Meant I coped less well when again placed in a situation which my SENCO [line manager] had said I was not to be put in. How and why was I put in this? She was in a meeting with someone meant to be taking the bulk of the group out - leaving me with the easier kids. Typical. Still nothing really bad happened but it did stress me out.

    I've looked at the links, thank you, and will go back to them when I have all the information I need but the redundancy figure works out at £4,095 which wouldn't last long. But that's not on my exact figures so it may be more and it's medical redundancy not the regular kind so I would hope for more, although I don't expect it will be much more.

    I think its time for me to get curious and look more carefully rather than be depressed about it all, but I can see I am coping less well at work. However, I can put a lot of that on the stress this is all creating. I'm doing dumb things, very forgetful and the fog and pain is far worse.

    I am hanging on in there at the moment. Yet to have my Occupational Health meeting, they've just changed offices and company.

  • I found this all very helpful as I too am waiting to see occ health through my council employer. I have been sick for the last 3 months and my sickness record isnt looking very good due to my conditions (RA, OA and fybro) (also have ruptured achillies) and I have been really struggling despite in the last 2 years reducing my hours. I am about to contact my union rep to see if we can meet. Its a worrying time. Thanks to all for the advise.

    gentle hugs. Joolz.

You may also like...