Spain is facing a process of population aging that is worse than other neighboring countries, which have gone through this situation before. In the case of Spain, moreover, it is a more serious demographic problem due to the high life expectancy of its citizens and the low fertility rate of women of childbearing age. This circumstance threatens the sustainability of the pension system, something that will be mitigated if an effective extension of the working life of those close to retirement is achieved to generate more wealth.
This reflection is the basis of the work Aging and Retirement, prepared by Fedea researchers José Ignacio Conde-Ruiz and Sergi Jiménez-Martín for the project Food for thought: contributions to the debate on public policies, where these economists suggest “changing things around. such as a stocking of labor and pension legislation with the goal of stopping the drain on all the senior talent that wants to keep working.
Therefore, the general idea for this reform is that, in general, the law fully allows you to collect a retirement pension and continue working at the same time. To this end, this proposal includes, among other things, the creation of a new contract without payment of severance pay, for those who wish to remain active full or part-time in the same company or others after reaching the agreed retirement age. access a pension. In the opinion of Conde-Ruiz, this dismissal step is not “discrimination” and can be “appropriate,” because the person already has their safety net combined with the pension of the Social Security system. In addition, it will make companies “not afraid” of senior employees who remain on staff and accumulate seniority.
These economists consider that the current flexible retirement modalities—active retirement, partial/flexible retirement (before/after the ordinary retirement age) and retirement compatible with self-employment—”are too rigid, and by eliminating this rigidities have space so that everyone can improve: workers, companies and the State,” the director of Fedea, Ángel de la Fuente, explained this Monday during the presentation of this report.
According to the figures from this research, there is evidence that suggests that in Spain the working capacity of working people aged 60 to 69 has increased by 59% in the last three decades compared to the corresponding death rate . “This means that older workers are better trained, have more work capacity and have better jobs in general,” Jiménez-Martín said. For this reason, the authors of the work point to an urgent need to make a comprehensive and radical reform of the period in which one moves from being active to retirement, “so that one does not go from work 40 hours a week to 0 overnight,” says the document presented.
At the same time, they believe that the retirement process “must not be the same for all workers and must take into account how difficult or physically demanding the profession is and the state of health of the worker.” But, above all, they show that this reform must be based on an idea: “Once the normal retirement age is reached, the system must allow, if the worker wishes, full compatibility between the receipt on pension and salary.” .
Combine the flexible retirement age from 61 or 63 years
Experts believe that, in terms of age, all retirement methods should be combined into one from the first possible early retirement age (61 or 63). From there, the new active retirement system should make the pension compatible with work at all ages. In addition, they believe that the amount of the pension should not be penalized “after the normal retirement age”, as currently happens with partial retirement; but they provide a penalty depending on the level of salary, health or difficulty of employment, before the normal retirement age.
In addition, they pointed out that “to avoid any form of discrimination, the new active retirement should not exclude any worker, as long as there is a minimum number of years of contributions and the right to a form of Therefore, they propose to eliminate the current obligation to spend a year in delayed retirement (or inactivity) to access active retirement at all ages, and introduce changes to partial retirement so that the worker can continue to same job at any time. any percentage of the day (now it is priced between a minimum of 25% and a maximum of 50%).
Regarding the impact of this reform on workers’ contributions and, therefore, on social contribution payments made by companies, these researchers suggest that for active and delayed retirement, the current system can be maintained allows Once the contribution career is complete (in terms of age and required contributions), the next job stops contributing or at most, in the case of active retirement, contributes a reduction of rate (solidarity quota). However, they added that, in their opinion, even if they could choose to continue with the said system, if access to work became completely flexible after starting to collect the pension, “as fair as possible of all workers (pensioner or not), competing for the same set of jobs, so the quotation will be made at the same rate for all.
This last option will be more expensive for companies, but workers will continue to contribute to the general scale (as in the United States) and their pension will be recalculated once the delay or the period of match between pension and salary is over, rewarding time. and/or additional contributions made to the system during career extension.