Ray is 56 years old, married and father to two adult children.
Following two duty motorcycle collisions in the late 1990’s, he required emergency spinal surgery and was eventually medically retired from the Police due to these injuries in June 2000.
His injuries were assessed to reduce his earning potential by 32% and he was given an injury pension based on that.
In 2002, his injury pension was reviewed and as there was no change in his condition it was left unaltered.
In 2004, his injury pension was reviewed again. This time, although it was stated that there was no medical change in his injury, his assessed earning potential disablement was reduced to 0% and his injury pension reduced to the lowest possible level.
Since his pension was reduced to the lowest possible level, he has not been called back to be reviewed again.
The justification given for the injury pension reduction was that, since medical retirement, he had been fully employed in a new career which made use of his engineering qualifications and knowledge, qualifications and experience as a traffic patrol officer.
He did well in his new career quickly progressing into a management position.
As his actual earnings had risen to a similar level to his previous police salary, it was decided that his earnings were no longer adversely affected by his injury.
In about 2016, he found out about the Injured On Duty Pensioners Association (IODPA).
Having studied their blogs and discussed his situation with other members he soon realised that the justification for his pension reduction was based on an incorrect interpretation of the Police Injury Pension Regulations.
The regulations require an assessment of uninjured earning potential based on ALL of the individual’s qualifications and experience which must be compared to realistic injured earning potential.
The 2004 review did not look at his skills and qualifications gained before and during his police career or make any comparison between his injured and uninjured earning potential, but merely showed his actual earnings were comparable to his old police pay.
The Police Federation funded a specialist solicitor to write to his former police employer, detailing judicial reviews which demonstrated that the 2004 review was contrary to the regulations.
A few months later, he received over 13 years worth of injury pension underpayment with interest and was reinstated at his previous level of injury award.
Unfortunately his back has now deteriorated to a point where he cannot walk up or down stairs, he can only walk short distances slowly using crutches and cannot sit upright for more than about an hour.
As a result of this deterioration in his duty injury his new employer ended his career last year, following a report from an Occupational Physician who found that as a result of his spinal injury that he is now unfit for any work of any description.
This doctors report renders him unemployable, so effectively his earnings disablement should now be 100%.
He knows that being unemployed and on the lowest level of injury pension, he would have struggled to pay his bills and so is very grateful that IODPA were able to provide him with knowledge and support, so that he received what he is entitled to.
He hopes that this article will help to spread the message to injured officers and those who know injured officers, that IODPA may be able to help those who are unaware of their rights under the injury pension regulations.
He would also like to express his thanks to the Police Federation for funding a solicitor with specialist knowledge of the judicial reviews and regulations governing police pensions who were able resolve the situation for him.