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Can you claim ill health retirement for rheumatoid arthritis?

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Yes, is the short answer. 1/3rd of people with RA have to give up work within 1 year of onset of disease, many more within 10 years of onset but things may be improving now due to biologic drugs. You would need to check the definition of ill health within your pension scheme to see if you qualify. Ill health retirement is limited to those with access to such a benefit under their occupational pension scheme. You may need to discuss with your consultant whether you would meet the criteria for your pension scheme - it is the consultant who decides not your GP. The pension scheme may want their own medical expert to examine you but cannot refuse if you meet the criteria. You may also be entitled to Disability living allowance and incapacity benefit. Please note that the rules for some schemes particularly local government are now not as generous as they used to be and to get the maximum entitlement you need to be incapable of any type of work, not just incapable of doing your own job.
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