• Deputy ombudsman Mick Martin received a larger payment than previously disclosed
  • He also received more than £10,000 of “benefits in kind” in 2015-16
  • PHSO says it “should have been clearer” in its original responses to HSJ

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman made a “termination payment” of £93,834 to its former deputy ombudsman who resigned earlier this year.

Mick Martin left the PHSO in March after being exposed by HSJ for his role covering up the sexual harassment of a director at the Derbyshire Healthcare Foundation Trust, where he was chair before joining the PHSO.

Mick Martin

Mick Martin

Mick Martin resigned in March this year

The PHSO told HSJ this week it should have been clearer about the payments Mr Martin received after new details emerged in its annual report.

The regulator had previously refused to reveal Mr Martin’s salary for 2015-16 following his resignation, but after a Freedom of Information Act request said in May that he received a salary of £135,000-£140,000 in 2015-16. The PHSO also said Mr Martin received six months’ contractual notice pay, which would be at least £67,500.

However, in its annual report, published on 4 November, Mr Martin is listed as being paid £195,000-£200,000, which included £10,300 of “benefits in kind” and £53,000 of pension benefits.

The report also said: “A termination payment of £93,834 was made in relation to Mick Martin upon his last day of service in line with his contractual notice terms. This is not included in the table above.”

The PHSO said the benefits in kind related to the fact Mr Martin was contract to work in London on Monday to Wednesday and in Manchester on Thursday and Friday, but was paid travel and subsistence costs as a taxable expense when he was required to work in different locations to what he was contracted to do.

A PHSO spokesman said: “We should have been clearer in our original response about these additional costs.

“The £93,834 quoted in the annual report is the total cost to PHSO. It is in line with Mr Martin’s contractual notice period of six months’ salary (using the band £135,000-140,000) plus the cost of employer’s pension and national insurance contributions.”

Ombudsman Dame Julie Mellor also resigned earlier this year after it was revealed she was warned about Mr Martin’s actions following the conclusion of an employment tribunal in July 2015 but she had taken no action.

An independent review by Sir Alex Allan published in September said Dame Julie was warned by Monitor, which wrote to her about the findings of the tribunal against Mr Martin.