More public sector bosses will have to return their golden goodbye bonuses under clawback rules

 
Lynsey Barber
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Cash goes back to the public purse with new rules (Source: Getty)

More highly paid public sector workers who leave their job with a generous golden goodbye, only to return to another public organisation soon after, will have to return the payout as the government cracks down on so-called boomerang bosses.

Clawback laws introduced earlier this year will be expanded and the threshold for those the law applies to will be lowered. It will apply to a further 90,000 bosses in the public sector, according to the Treasury.

By April 2016, the rule will apply to anyone earning more than £80,000, compared to £100,000 previously, and to people returning to any organisation in the public body within a year. Original proposals applied only to those returning to the same sector.

Some public bodies will be exempt from the new rules, however. That includes financial bodies such as the Financial Conduct Authority, Bank of England, payments systems regulator, and nationalised banks such as Royal Bank of Scotland. Public broadcasters the BBC, Channel 4 and S4C will also be exempt.

"It is unacceptable that in the past, working taxpayers have had to fork out for golden parachute payments for highly-paid public sector workers who then go on to get jobs in another part of the public sector," said chief Treasury secretary Greg Hands.

"Some of these payments have been worth hundreds of thousands of pounds. We’ve already delivered on our pledge to end six-figure pay-offs in Whitehall. Now we’re going further, and delivering a system that will mean exit payments are clawed back if public sector workers who get them simply join another organisation within months."

Golden goodbyes will also be capped at £95,000 and applies to redundancy, severance and pension payments.