The pensions press has been abuzz with comment on the expanded range of powers given to the Pensions Regulator (“TPR“) by the Pension Schemes Act 2021 (the “Act“) which are expected to come into force in Autumn 2021.  These include imprisonment or unlimited fines for some offences, civil penalties of up to £1 million and enhanced information gathering powers with penalties for non-compliance.

Continue Reading New powers for the Pensions Regulator – should employers be concerned?

The government has set the automatic enrolment earning figures for the 2021/22 tax year as follows:

  • Earnings trigger: £10,000
  • Qualifying earnings band: £6,240 – £50,270

The earnings trigger is the level of earnings that a jobholder must receive in order to be eligible for automatic enrolment. The level of the earnings trigger has remained unchanged

The anticipation is over! The Pension Schemes Act 2021 received Royal Assent and became law on 11 February. The Act aims to enhance the security and sustainability of pensions in the UK, and to protect defined benefit (“DB“) pension schemes. The Act makes some significant changes to the pensions world, most of which will be brought into effect and fleshed out through Regulations and guidance from the Pensions Regulator (“tPR“). This blog briefly sets out the key provisions of the Act from an employer’s perspective.
Continue Reading The Pension Schemes Act 2021 – What employers need to know

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it many challenges. One of the challenges faced by businesses has been how to work around the social distancing restrictions that have existed in various forms over the course of 2020. In this post we briefly explore one aspect of this – whether, and how, documents may be signed electronically.

Continue Reading Electronic signing in a COVID world and beyond

The Pensions Regulator issued a suite of COVID-19 guidance for trustees and employers at the end of March. As part of that guidance, the Regulator announced that it would be taking a more flexible approach to regulation and enforcement in certain areas for a limited period. Over the intervening months, this flexibility has largely been removed now that schemes have come through the initial disruption and adjusted to new ways of working. Many employers, however, are still experiencing difficult times.

Continue Reading The Pensions Regulator’s COVID-19 guidance – where are we now?

With the increased focus on governance of trustee boards and the Pensions Regulator (the “Regulator“)’s expectation of skilled, engaged and diverse trustee boards being led by an effective chair, the selection of the “right” trustees is becoming even more important. As employers will often be responsible for appointing trustees to trustee boards, you will find below four factors employers may want to take into account before appointing any new trustees.

Continue Reading Trustee Board Selection – What Do Employers Need To Think About?

The Pensions Regulator recently published guidance for supervising the consolidation of defined benefit pension schemes into superfunds. The guidance provides an interim framework for the regulation of superfunds, prior to a statutory framework being put in place.

It’s a step towards establishing a superfund industry which could be a viable endgame option for certain schemes in the future.


Continue Reading DB Superfunds – a viable endgame?

On 16 June, the Pensions Regulator (TPR) updated its COVID-19 guidance for employers and trustees. This includes an extension to measures to help pension schemes navigate the challenges presented by the pandemic, beyond 30 June 2020.

Continue Reading Measures extended to help employers and pension scheme trustees tackle COVID-19 challenges

Each spring, the Pensions Regulator (“tPR”) publishes its Annual Funding Statement on what it expects for defined benefit pension scheme actuarial valuations. With the recent 2020 publication, it is of particular interest to employers because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Whilst aimed at pension schemes with valuation dates between 22 September 2019 and 21 September 2020, it is also relevant for schemes experiencing significant changes and which have to review funding and investment risk.


Continue Reading TPR Annual Funding Statement 2020