Exclusive: Tory Ministers Who Left Government Last Year Entitled To £270,000 In Payoffs

Labour said it was "one last ride on the gravy train".
Dominic Raab, Therese Coffey and Ben Wallace all left office in the past year.
Dominic Raab, Therese Coffey and Ben Wallace all left office in the past year.
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Tory ministers who left the government in the past year were entitled to taxpayer-funded payoffs of more than £270,000, HuffPost UK can reveal.

A total of 26 Conservatives – 21 MPs and five peers – either resigned or were sacked during another year of political chaos.

They included former deputy prime minister Dominic Raab, ex-defence secretary Ben Wallace and former environment secretary Therese Coffey.

Others in line for the bumper golden goodbyes were Suella Braverman, who was sacked as home secretary by Rishi Sunak and ex-immigration minister Robert Jenrick.

Under the Ministerial and other Pensions and Salaries Act 1991, departing ministers are entitled to three months of their final annual salary as a severance package.

The potential payoffs ranged from £20,371 for Lord Goldsmith – who quit as Commonwealth minister in protest at Sunak’s green policies – and £4,479 for former Tory whips Steve Double and Julie Marson.

Overall, the amount the ex-ministers were entitled to receive came to £272,603.

It is not yet known how many accepted the payoffs, but the year before fewer than 10% of departing ministers turned them down.

If that was repeated in 2023/24, the final bill to the taxpayer would be around £250,000.

Labour has said it would reform the rules so that ministers leaving government would only receive a quarter of their earnings for the previous 12 months, so that those who had served for less than a year would not receive the full three months payment.

Shadow attorney general, Emily Thornberry, said: “For the ministers lining up to quit Rishi Sunak’s government, these payments represent one last ride on the gravy train.

“We will not know for several months how much of the £272,603 entitlement they claimed, although recent history tells us that very few ministers will have turned down their payments.

“But one thing we know for sure is that, if Labour’s proposed reforms had been in place, Dominic Raab would not have been entitled to any payment after being forced to quit due to bullying, and nor would Suella Braverman, if the publication of her unauthorised article was found to have breached the ministerial code.

“Rishi Sunak has already ordered his MPs to vote against those reforms, so we know the only way we are going to change this discredited system is by electing a Labour government, and cleaning up our politics for good.”

A government spokesperson said: “There are long-standing rules in place to determine what ministers are entitled to receive as severance pay.

“Under these rules, it is for ministers to decide whether they wish to accept severance pay.”


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