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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10259
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I am a ex firefighter with Lancashire Fire Service. In

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Hi my name is David ***** *****, I am a ex firefighter with Lancashire Fire Service.In February this year I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis requiring a double hip relpacement.
I contacted the fire service through the pension service a separate body who informed me they had passed on my request for an early release of my pension.
Over the last few months I have repeatedly contacted the service for an update , they informed me they have received no response from the fire service. i contacted the fire service directly and again received no response. I eventually put in a complaint and received a reply saying I would be sent a form regarding my medical records.
After a 2 week wait I eventually received the form , how it got to me I have no idea, as the address was completely wrong, with a non existent post code.
I emailed the service with the email address provided on the form and contact name, yesterday , asking them to clarify my address as I have received communications over the last 20 years at my address and have still not had a reply.
I am reluctant to send any further paperwork for fear any reply will go missing.
I feel if I am to be granted my pension it should have been done so when I was diagnosed , hoping for help on this matter, ***** *****

Hello David - for background who exactly is the pension service provider and this has been going on since Feb is this correct?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Hi the pension service is a separate body that acts for several different fire authorities.
I was diagnosed in February and contacted the pension service shortly afterwards

Thank you. I apologise for the delay in getting back to you. I have had clients all day.

I’m not certain what question you are asking here but I agree with you that the pension should be backdated (if they are going to allow early release) to when you made the application if all the delays have been pursuant to their shambolic (it seems) paperwork.

However if they won’t do that, then you are faced with making a formal complaint to the Pension Ombudsman. To be honest, I think you actually have a complaint to make to the Ombudsman now in view of the protracted delay in dealing with this.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Thank you for your answer,
I have now again tried to contract the fire service by email as I have done several times before and am know having my emails returned as suspected spam.
I now feel I have little alternative but to proceed via the pension ombudsman.
Could you assist me in how to contact them.
***** *****

I wouldn’t rely on email. I would put it on paper in an envelope with a stamp on. Send it by recorded delivery and then, they cannot deny having received the correspondence.

Here is the Pensions Ombudsman

Before you go (you can come back at any time), please don’t forget to use the rating service because that gives me credit. It doesn’t just give me a pat on the head! The thread remains open. We can still exchange emails.

Kind regards.


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